Reviewed by Darcie Stevens, Fri., Nov. 19, 2004
The RiseReclamation Process
Powerful, political, pure, the Rise reclaims rock & roll for the younger, jaded generation with fury on Reclamation Process. Back in August, Sparta attempted such a finished product, but failed miserably, possibly due to commercial constraints. The Rise doesn't have this problem. On this too-short firebomb, the hardcore local quartet genre-hops through title after title, from the intrinsically focused and explosive opener "Durational Expectancy" to the beautifully electronic and peaceful closer, "The Day History Stopped Repeating Itself." A combination of wishful thinking for our country's future and intense distaste for the present, this album is a model of contemporary protest songs within the context of an angry soul. More Rage Against the Machine than At the Drive-In, mostly because of the insistence for change within the lyrics, the Rise pulls elements from dance and laptop rock ("The Most Intensive Second Guessing," "An Engineered Message"), creating a sound all its own. More important is the message. "We sold our hearts for salary," Cory Kilduff exclaims. "We can't breathe. Without our benefits and paychecks, we are all replaceable." Those lines from "The Strategy of Social Futurism," the disc's most painfully true cut, plead for help and scold at once. With proggy guitar riffs and pounding bass pushing the poetry through Reclamation, it's only regrettable the album didn't drop before the election. Something this powerful and poignant could have woken up that half of the country that's so obviously still dreaming. Music as medicine.