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Formed in 1993, Swedish hardcore punkers Raised Fist shape an aggressive yet inviting sound when honing their old-school-influenced punk roots with a metal edge. Taking their name from a Rage Against the Machine lyric, Alexander "Alle" Rajkovic (vocals), Andreas "Josse" Johansson (bass), Marco Eronen (guitar), and Oskar Karlsson (drums) were praised early on by European critics. Early independent releases such as the 1994 You're Not Like Me and 1996 Stronger Than Ever EPs, along with their 1998 hailed debut, Fuel, further marked Raised Fist's pinch-hitting approach and molded them overseas. Ignoring the Guidelines marked the band's proper major-label debut, issued in 2000 on Burning Heart. The following tour was a massive success, and the band — adding second guitarist Daniel Holmberg along the way — returned to the studio the next year to pump out Dedication for their growing base of rabid fans. The record arrived on Epitaph in the fall of 2002, a year after a collection of early material showed up with Watch Your Step. Spring 2006 found Raised Fist dropping their fourth studio album, Sound of the Republic; it was a ferocious record of hardcore and metal produced by Daniel Bergstrand (In Flames, Meshuggah) that featured new drummer Matte Modin (ex-Dark Funeral). Both headlining dates and ones with Comeback Kid were played through the summer around Europe.