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Savior (Rise Against song)

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"Savior"
Cover art for the single "Savior" by Rise Against.
Single by Rise Against
from the album Appeal to Reason
Released June 3, 2009
Format
Recorded The Blasting Room, Fort Collins, Colorado
Genre Punk rock
Length 4:02
Label
Writer(s) Rise Against
Producer(s)
Rise Against singles chronology
"Audience of One"
(2009)
"Savior"
(2009)
"Help Is on the Way"
(2011)

"Savior" is a song by American rock band Rise Against, featured on their fifth studio album Appeal to Reason (2008). Written and performed by the band, the song deviates from the social and political topics normally discussed in Rise Against songs, and is instead about forgiveness and broken relationships. It is a punk rock song, with a "frenetic pace" that John Hanson of Sputnikmusic described as reminiscent of tracks from the band's 2003 album Revolutions per Minute.[1] It was released as Appeal to Reason's third single on June 3, 2009.

"Savior" was well received by critics, with praise directed towards its lyrics, and remains one of the band's most commercially successful singles to date. It peaked at number three on both the Hot Rock Songs and Alternative Songs music charts, and holds the record for the most consecutive weeks spent on either chart, with sixty-three and sixty-five weeks respectively. The accompanying music video depicts actors in animal costumes engaging in a mosh pit.

Background[edit]

"Savior" was written by American rock band Rise Against, with lyrics by lead vocalist Tim McIlrath, and produced by Bill Stevenson and Jason Livermore. Stevenson and Livermore engineered the song with Andrew Berlin, while Chris Lord-Alge assisted as the mixer. It was recorded at the Blasting Room in Fort Collins, Colorado and was mastered by Ted Jensen.[2] Rise Against released the song as the Appeal to Reason's third and final single on June 3, 2009.[3] It impacted radio stations on June 16.[4]

When writing the lyrics for Rise Against songs, McIlrath will often sing nonsensical words over completed melodies, in order to identify the lyrical tone that each song will eventually convey. For "Savior", McIlrath remarked that while he mostly sang gibberish, he always found himself singing the line "I don't hate you". McIlrath used this line as a base to construct the lyrics and themes present within "Savior".[5] In a 2014 interview, McIlrath commented on how he had originally voted to cut the song from Appeal to Reason, but was eventually overruled.[6]

Composition[edit]

A twenty-four second sample of the song's chorus.

Problems playing this file? See media help.

"Savior" is a punk rock song,[3] and has been described by Aaron Burgess of The A.V. Club as an "uptempo anthem".[7] The song's composition is written in the time signature of common time, with a moderate tempo of 94 beats per minute. It follows verse-chorus form, and is composed in the key F♯ minor, with a melody that spans a tonal range of E4 to C♯6.[8] John Hanson of Sputnikmusic noted that the song had a "frenetic pace", which was reminiscent of many of the tracks from the band's 2003 album Revolutions per Minute.[1]

Lyrically, "Savior" deviates from the social and political topics normally discussed in Rise Against songs, and is instead about forgiveness and broken relationships.[1][3] It tells the story of a couple who have recently split up. The two attempt to reconcile their differences, with lines such as "I don't hate you, boy / I just want to save you while there's still something left to save."[3] Hanson and Liz Ramanand of Loudwire have characterized the lyrics as "poignant", and "poetic".[1][9]

Reception and chart performance[edit]

"Savior" was well received by critics. Hanson and Davey Boy of Sputnikmusic both praised the song; Hanson described it as "one of the most inspired songs [Rise Against] have written to date", while Boy wrote that "'Savior' sees absolutely everything come together perfectly to make for one hell of a song".[1][10] Burgess opined that "Savior" was one of three Appeal to Reason tracks that would "satisfy anyone still uneasy about Rise Against's radio aspirations".[7] Bob Hoose of Plugged In complimented the positive and hopeful lyrics.[3]

Commercially, "Savior" remains one of Rise Against's most successful singles to date, and spent a considerable amount of time on multiple Billboard music charts. Reaching as high as number two on the Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles chart, it spent thirty-six weeks on the chart, the fourth most amount of time for any song on the chart.[a][11] "Savior" peaked at number three on both the Hot Rock Songs and Alternative Songs charts,[12][13] and holds the record for the most amount of time spent for both charts, with sixty-three and sixty-five weeks respectfully.[14] It was later certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America, denoting shipments of 1,000,000 copies.[15] In Canada, the song reached number sixty-eight on the Canadian Hot 100.[16]

Music video[edit]

Various animals, such as a shark, a rabbit, a polar bear, and an elephant engaging in a mosh pit
The music video depicts actors in animal costumes engaging in a mosh pit.

The accompanying music video was directed by Kevin Kerslake,[17] who had previously directed the band's music videos for "Ready to Fall", and "Re-Education (Through Labor)".[18] The video centers around actors wearing animal costumes, who in the beginning, engage in a mosh pit. One of the animals, a polar bear, is constantly being punched and kicked by an elephant, and decides to leave. While traveling on a bus, it sees the same elephant limping. The polar bear reluctantly asks the driver to stop and let the elephant on, who sits next to the polar bear, and the two hold hands.[19] Scenes of Rise Against performing and destroying their instruments are shown throughout.[18]

McIlrath had originally envisioned a simple performance video, with the band "going nuts in a parking lot, trashing equipment, having fun and showing the physical nature of Rise Against". However, Kerslake came up with the idea for the animals, as he felt it would be a bizarre element that would keep people watching.[18] Despite its humorous nature, Kerslake stated that there were some political undertones in the video, with the polar bear representing endangered species, while the elephant represents the Republican Party of the United States.[b][19]

Personnel and credits[edit]

Credits adapted from the liner notes of Appeal to Reason.[2]

Charts[edit]

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/Sales
United States (RIAA)[15] Platinum 1,000,000^

References[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Songs that have spent more time on the Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles chart include: Pearl Jam's "Alive" (sixty-one weeks) and "Even Flow" (fifty-two weeks), and Luther Vandross' "Think About You" (forty-three weeks).[11]
  2. ^ The elephant is the official symbol for the Republican Party of the United States.[20]

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Hanson, John (October 7, 2008). "Rise Against - Appeal to Reason Review". Sputnikmusic. Retrieved January 25, 2016. 
  2. ^ a b Appeal to Reason (liner notes). Rise Against. DGC Records, Interscope Records. 2008. 
  3. ^ a b c d e Hoose, Bob. "'Savior' Track Review". Plugged In. Retrieved January 6, 2015. 
  4. ^ "AllAccess.com Alternative eWeekly". AllAccess. June 9, 2009. Retrieved July 2, 2016. 
  5. ^ Another Station: Another Mile (Documentary). October 5, 2010. 
  6. ^ Schreurs, Jason (June 27, 2014). ""There is no song for everybody"–Rise Against’s Tim McIlrath discusses their risky new album". Alternative Press. Retrieved October 2, 2015. 
  7. ^ a b Burgess, Aaron (October 6, 2008). "Rise Against: Appeal To Reason". The A.V. Club. Retrieved March 12, 2016. 
  8. ^ "Digital Sheet Music – Rise Against – Savior". MusicNotes.com. Retrieved March 28, 2016. 
  9. ^ Ramanand, Liz. "No. 33: Rise Against, 'Savior' – Top 21st Century Hard Rock Songs". Loudwire. Retrieved March 29, 2016. 
  10. ^ Boy, Davey (January 21, 2009). "Rise Against - Appeal to Reason Review". Sputnikmusic. Retrieved March 12, 2016. 
  11. ^ a b c Trust, Gary (July 2, 2010). "Ask Billboard: Madonna Vs. Lady Gaga". Billboard. Retrieved October 8, 2015. 
  12. ^ a b "Rise Against – Chart history". Billboard Hot Rock Songs for Rise Against. Retrieved October 8, 2015. 
  13. ^ a b "Rise Against – Chart history". Alternative Songs for Rise Against. Retrieved October 8, 2015. 
  14. ^ Trust, Gary (October 2, 2010). "Extended Stays". Billboard 122 (39): 42. Retrieved March 11, 2016. 
  15. ^ a b "American single certifications – Rise Against – Savior". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH
  16. ^ a b "Rise Against – Chart history". Canadian Hot 100 for Rise Against. Archived from the original on November 1, 2015. Retrieved October 8, 2015. 
  17. ^ Siolos, Vicki (October 2, 2009). "Rise Against, 'Savior' — Behind The Scenes Video". Noisecreep. Retrieved March 29, 2016. 
  18. ^ a b c Garner, George (February 15, 2015). "The Ultimate Rise Against Videography" (select Savior slide). Kerrang!. Retrieved March 29, 2016. 
  19. ^ a b "Rise Against - Savior (Making Of)". RiseAgainstVEVO. November 25, 2009. Retrieved March 29, 2016. 
  20. ^ Nix, Elizabeth (July 7, 2015). "Election 101: How did the Republican and Democratic parties get their animal symbols?". History. Retrieved March 30, 2016. 
  21. ^ "Alternative Songs Year End 2009". Billboard. Retrieved January 6, 2016. 
  22. ^ "Rock Songs Year End 2009". Billboard. Retrieved October 8, 2015. 
  23. ^ "Alternative Songs Year End 2010". Billboard. Retrieved January 6, 2016. 
  24. ^ "Rock Songs Year End 2010". Billboard. Retrieved October 8, 2015. 

External links[edit]