In a Songfacts interview with Rise Against frontman Tim McIlrath
, he told the story behind "Swing Life Away."
"That was written when I was living in a punk house in Chicago," he said. "We spent a lot of our summers hanging out on the front porch because it was so hot in the house and we had no air conditioning. We had guitars out there, people would just hang out and drink and smoke.
It was a document to that time in my life when it was a lot of young people trying to figure out what it is they want to do and how they want to move forward in their life. Everyone has a cool story and everyone has their own struggles and experience. Some of us were really lost, some of us knew exactly what we wanted. That search that you're on in your youth. 'Swing' was a document to that, a document to Chicago in the summer, and a document to that time in my life just living with a bunch of roommates in a punk house in Chicago."