May 19, 2024

New Fury Media

Music. Gaming. Nostalgia. Culture.

Rise Against brings a stacked bill for a night of throwbacks in Reno (Show Review)

By Rachel Eliakis

It may have been a mid-week rock show, but that didn’t stop the 30 and 40 year old moms and dads from packing the house to see a few of their favorite bands from their high school days take the stage and take them back to the early 2000s. It was a three hour rage-fest that likely left fans with a well deserved headache the next day from all the headbanging and screaming they’ve yearned for.  

Each band played a set of new and old favorites for about an hour each, rocking the crowd and stirring up a mid-week mosh pit to get the fans through to the weekend. 

Opening first, Senses Fail took the stage bringing the energy with vocalist Buddy Nielsen asking the crowd to raise their hand if they were sitting down “because they were old as fuck.” Prompting a good laugh from the audience, Nielson encouraged everyone to “get the fuck out” of their seats and rage as the band played hits like Calling All Cars and Bite to Break Skin, finishing with a surprising rendition of Down With The Sickness by Disturbed. 

Next up, The Used cranked the volume up a little more, belting tracks from their most recent album Heartwork, and screaming old hits like “The Bird and the Worm” and “Pretty Handsome Awkward”. Vocalist Bert McCracken spoke to the crowd about the mental health struggles of the pandemic shutdown for artists, and how good it felt to be back on stage performing for the fans. 

Rise Against performed last, opening with “Prayer of the Refugee”, a song that still hits like the day you first heard it over 15 years ago. With song after song of high energy guitar riffs from lead guitarist Zach Blair and powerful vocals from Tim McIlrath, the crowd in The Grand Ballroom screamed along and pumped their fists in the air in true counterculture form. It was more than a mid-week rock show, it was a recovery for many fans who also felt the effects from the loss of live music and desperately needed an outlet for their frustrations. In true Rise Against fashion, the band encouraged fans to let that aggression out and keep fighting for what they believed. Social and political activism has long been a theme of Rise Against’s message, most recently their outspoken support for the war efforts in Ukraine. Finishing strong with ‘Savior,’ one of the band’s most notable anthems, Rise Against left fans feeling nostalgic and alive again, ready to regain a sense of normalcy. 

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