Give It All

Album: Siren Song Of The Counter Culture (2004)
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Songfacts®:

  • "Give It All" is Rise Against's credo, and the song they've played live more than any other. In a Songfacts interview with lead singer Tim McIlrath, he said: "'Give It All' is a Rise Against anthem. It is about overcoming obstacles in a way that punk rock and hardcore taught us to. It was nods to the punk rock and the DIY attitude. And then this sort of push to the listener to keep fighting to put their head down and keep on moving forward."
  • This was the first Rise Against song released on a major label. The band formed in Chicago in 1999 and issued their first two albums on the independent Fat Wreck Chords. After a run on the Warped Tour, they signed with Geffen Records in 2003, which issued "Give It All" as the first single from the album Siren Song Of The Counter Culture. The label deal worked out well: Rise Against didn't have to alter their sound, and with some promotional muscle behind them, their albums started selling about a million copies each (worldwide) and they became a headline live act.
  • Rise Against were ardently opposed to US President George Bush, who was up for re-election in 2004, the year this song was released. Before it appeared on Siren Song Of The Counter Culture, it was included on the compilation Rock Against Bush, Vol. 1, issued by Fat Wreck Chords.
  • The music video was directed by James Cox, who went on to direct the movie Straight A's. As the album title implies, it is very counter culture, showing the band defacing a McDonald's billboard and breaking into the Lincoln Park Zoo to put a "I've spent my entire life trapped in a cage" sticker on the tiger display (the group is big into animal rights and are vegetarians). It was shot in their hometown of Chicago, with much of the action taking place in a subway car.

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