Rise and Strike: NorCal Band Injects Melody Into Their Thrashy Hardcore on New EP

Photo: Jeremy Daimler

The members of Rise and Strike have known each other since their teen years, starting the band up out of a garage Long Beach, Calfornia almost a decade ago. 

"We play music for the kid in the back of the room, the one who maybe saw a flyer somewhere or heard at school about a hardcore show coming through their area," says Rise and Strike vocalist Brandon. Now based out of Northern California, the band's earliest material had a no-nonsense take on hardcore, packing punch with thrashy riffs keeping the tempos moving at a quick pace. 

Rise and Strike has gone from strength to strength with each of their releases, which includes last year's Positive Fucking Violence demo.

With a new year just kicking off, Rise and Strike is starting 2024 in style. No Echo has partnered with the California hardcore unit and premiering In Memory of the Kids We Used to Be, a new EP that showcases their strongest batch of songs yet.

"We knew going into this EP that we wanted to make something melodic and melancholy rather than our usual thrashy hardcore though that’s not gone by any means," Rise and Strike guitarist Matt reveals. "Being a one-guitar band makes me not usually any to go crazy with leads and overdubs but I said fuck it and tried to make the music invoke the same emotions i feel when i think of the friends we’ve lost along the way."

"These songs are the culmination tracks from bands previous and songs I’ve had for years," Brandon tells No Echo. "It’s a celebration of life and an expression of grief screamed out for all those we lost in life, for my brother and friends who didn’t make it to 2024, and our deepest hopes that wherever they may be now, they’re smiling down at us.

"The EP in itself, in its inception, began around 9 years ago, but never reached its full realization til this last June. We plan to release it and tour with it, in hopes that it may reach the ears and hearts of those in need of catharsis, cos everyone has experienced loss in life or loss of life in some varying degree, and I feel like so many still need healing and to know they aren’t alone in this tragedy presented by life’s circumstance, and the fact that part of life is that it inevitably ends. Even if it is long before we’re ready for it to.

Photos: Jeremy Daimler

"'Somewhere in the Grey,' for an example, (although honestly this theme and the content of the song is recurring throughout) to me is a lyrical portrait two brothers and what they face as they leave childhood behind and discover the meaning of struggle and addictions in their adulthood. This song was written firsthand of the experiences we faced growing up in a world we were not prepared for, and being cast out of dysfunctional homes, we plunged into a world that offered solace in chemical form.

"It’s a cry for redemption of the surviving brother, who lives with the guilt of the pain he’s caused those he loves most, and grieves those he has lost, and the struggle of guilt in blaming himself for not doing more or being there for those he loved whom now left this world, and in turn, left him behind to fight the wars alone."


In Memory of the Kids We Used to Be will hit all streaming outlets tomorrow (January 27th). The EP will also be released in cassette and CD formats with a pre-order coming next week on their Bandcamp page.

Hit the Rise and Strike Linktree to find all of their social media pages.


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