Siren Song of the Counter Culture

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Siren Song of the Counter Culture
Rise Against Siren Song of the Counter Culture.jpg
Studio album by Rise Against
Released August 10, 2004[1]
Recorded December 2003 – May 2004
Studio Plumper Mountain Sound
(Gibsons, British Columbia)
The Warehouse Studio
(Vancouver, British Columbia)
Genre Melodic hardcore, punk rock, hardcore punk
Length 40:54
Label Geffen
Producer Garth Richardson
Rise Against chronology
Revolutions per Minute
Siren Song of the Counter Culture
The Sufferer & the Witness
Singles from Siren Song of the Counter Culture
  1. "Give It All"
    Released: November 2004
  2. "Swing Life Away"
    Released: April 2005
  3. "Life Less Frightening"
    Released: July 2005

Siren Song of the Counter Culture is the third album by American punk rock band Rise Against, released on August 10, 2004. It is the band's first release on a major label. It is also the first album not to feature guitarist Todd Mohney, being replaced by Chris Chasse.

The album sold very well, mainly due to the success of its single, "Swing Life Away", which reached #12 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks, making it the band's highest-charting single at the time. Also faring well were the album's other two singles, "Give It All" (#37) and "Life Less Frightening" (#33) While the album was commercially successful, Siren Song of the Counter Culture is not Rise Against's highest charting album on the Billboard 200, peaking only at #136; subsequent albums The Sufferer & The Witness, Appeal to Reason, and Endgame charted higher, peaking at #10, #3, #2 respectively. The album has been certified gold by the RIAA and platinum by the CRIA.

Writing and production[edit]

Siren Song of the Counter Culture was recorded in 2004 at Plumper Mountain Sound in Gibsons, British Columbia and The Warehouse Studio in Vancouver with producer Garth Richardson.

Critical reception and chart performance[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 3/5 stars[2] 7/10[3]
Pitchfork Media 2.9/10[4]
Sputnikmusic 4/5[5]
Ultimate Guitar Archive 9.3/10[6]

Siren Song of the Counter Culture received mostly positive reviews from critics. Ultimate Guitar Archive lauded almost every aspect of the album, with particular praise for the use of multiple guitar layers, its "poetically angry lyrics", and McIlrath's vocals. However, the review also mentioned that Rise Against fans may be disappointed with the band's move towards a more accessible sound.[6] Davey Boy of Sputnikmusic described Siren Song of the Counter Culture as an "impressively energetic and surprisingly accessible package of punk, hardcore and rock all rolled into one", but stated that its greatest weakness was the lack of individually memorable songs.[5] Alex Parker of complimented the lyrics for their relevancy.[3] Johnny Loftus of AllMusic noted that the album occasionally suffers from overproduction and "obvious mixing tweaks", while Justin Donnelly of Blistering opined that the commercialized aspects of the songs lessened their potency and aggression.[7] In a heavily critical review, Marc Hogan of Pitchfork Media jokingly described Siren Song of the Counter Culture to political activist Ralph Nader, as Hogan felt the album's "empty political sloganeering and crybaby bullshit" helped him understand why Nader was running for the 2004 United States presidential election.[4]

McIlrath remarked that for the first six months of its release, Siren Song of the Counter Culture received almost no fanfare, and radio stations did not play their songs.[8][9] Despite this, it became the first Rise Against album to reach the Billboard 200, where it peaked at 136.[10] It also peaked at number one on the Top Heatseekers chart.[11]

Track listing[edit]

All lyrics written by Tim McIlrath; all music composed by Tim McIlrath, Joe Principe, Brandon Barnes and Chris Chasse, unless otherwised noted.

No. Title Length
1. "State of the Union"   2:19
2. "The First Drop"   2:39
3. "Life Less Frightening"   3:44
4. "Paper Wings"   3:43
5. "Blood to Bleed"   3:48
6. "To Them These Streets Belong"   2:49
7. "Tip the Scales"   3:49
8. "Anywhere but Here"   3:38
9. "Give It All"   2:50
10. "Dancing for Rain"   4:01
11. "Swing Life Away" (McIlrath, Neil Hennessy) 3:20
12. "Rumors of My Demise Have Been Greatly Exaggerated"   4:14
Total length:


Credits adapted from the liner notes of Siren Song of the Counter Culture, unless otherwise noted.[12]



  1. ^
  2. ^ Loftus, Johnny. "Siren Song of the Counter-Culture - Rise Against". AllMusic. Retrieved April 10, 2016. 
  3. ^ a b Parker, Alex. "Rise Against – Siren Song Of The Counter Culture – Album Review". Retrieved December 3, 2014. 
  4. ^ a b Hogan, Marc. "Rise Against: Siren Song of the Counter Culture". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved January 18, 2015. 
  5. ^ a b Boy, Davey (June 16, 2008). "Review: Rise Against - Siren Song of the Counter Culture". Sputnikmusic. Retrieved April 10, 2016. 
  6. ^ a b UG Team (July 26, 2005). "Siren Song Of The Counter Culture Review". Ultimate Guitar Archive. Retrieved April 10, 2016. 
  7. ^ Donnelly, Justin. "Rise Against - Siren Song Of The Counter Culture (Geffen Records)". Blistering. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  8. ^ Paul, Aubin (December 6, 2006). "Tim McIlrath (Rise Against)". Retrieved May 25, 2016. 
  9. ^ Rosen, Steven (November 11, 2014). "Tim McIlrath: 'I Never Had a Very Careerist Attitude Towards Rise Against's Music and Message'". Ultimate Guitar Archive. Retrieved May 25, 2016. 
  10. ^ a b "Rise Against – Chart history" Billboard 200 for Rise Against. Retrieved May 24, 2016.
  11. ^ a b "Rise Against – Chart history" Billboard Top Heatseekers Albums for Rise Against. Retrieved May 24, 2016.
  12. ^ ‹See Tfm›Siren Song of the Counter Culture (liner notes). Rise Against. Geffen Records. 2004. 
  13. ^ Mack, Adrian (September 2, 2009). "NDP MLA Nicholas Simons strikes hardcore gold record". The Georgia Straight. Retrieved April 10, 2016. 
  14. ^ "ARIA Charts - Accreditations - 2014 Albums". Australian Record Industry Association. Retrieved 2014-05-18. 
  15. ^ "CRIA database". Canadian Recording Industry Association. 
  16. ^ "RIAA Database Search Results". Recording Industry Association of America. 

External links[edit]