The band changed its name to "Rise Against" in 2001 and released their first album, The Unraveling (produced by veteran punk producer Mass Giorgini) on Fat Wreck Chords. After touring in support of The Unraveling, the band returned to the studio in December 2002 to work on their second full-length, Revolutions per Minute (produced by Bill Stevenson and Jason Livermore at The Blasting Room), which was released in 2003. The band toured extensively in support of its first two records, opening for Sick of It All, NOFX, Agnostic Front, No Use for a Name, AFI, and Strung Out. In addition, Rise Against participated in the 2003 Warped Tour.
Rise Against signed onto DreamWorks Records in December 2003 and recorded their third album, Siren Song of the Counter Culture, in 2004. DreamWorks was shortly absorbed by the Universal Music Group, and Rise Against found itself with Geffen Records, a Universal Music Group subsidiary. Shortly after the band signed with Geffen, Mohney left and was replaced by guitarist Chris Chasse. Rise Against released Siren Song of the Counter Culture in August 2004 on Geffen Records. The album, in addition to being the band's first on a major record label, was their first to crack the Billboard 200 charts and was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). The album received generally positive reviews from critics, but drew criticism for its accessibility and melodious sound compared to previous Rise Against works. Rise Against toured North America, Europe, Australia, and Japan in support of Siren Song of the Counter Culture. In January 2006, after touring in support of Siren Song of the Counter Culture, Rise Against recorded their fourth studio album at the Blasting Room studio in Fort Collins, Colorado with producers Bill Stevenson and Jason Livermore. Mixed by Chris Lord-Alge at Resonate Sound in Burbank, California, The Sufferer & the Witness was released on July 4, 2006. The album peaked at number 10 on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart, selling 48,397 copies in its first week of release; it was eventually certified gold by the RIAA in 2008. The Age newspaper said that with The Sufferer & the Witness, the band "returns to their punk roots." In addition to earning Rise Against its best chart and sales numbers at the time, the album was generally well received by critics.
Rise Against's fifth studio album Appeal to Reason was released on October 4 in Australia, October 6 across Europe, and October 7 in the United States. The album sold 64,700 copies in its first week and peaked at number three on the U.S. Billboard 200, making it Rise Against's highest-charting album to date. Appeal to Reason was met with generally positive reviews. However, critics did not rate it as highly as The Sufferer & the Witness, mostly blaming the movement toward the mainstream and away from faster hardcore punk. Giving the album a C+ rating, Marc Weingarten of Entertainment Weekly said the album is filled with "protest anthems that lean closer to the burnished angst of such bands as New Found Glory and Fall Out Boy than the genuine outrage of brainy Green Day" and songs that are "peppy but pretty empty, power-chord downers with little bark or bite.
Rise Against finished recording their sixth studio album, Endgame, in January 2011, after they recorded some last minute guest vocals for the record. The lyrics of the album focus on real world events, such as Hurricane Katrina and the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. According to McIlrath, although the lyrics discuss grim topics, they actually take on a positive view and were written from the perspective of: "What if the place on the other side of this transition is a place we'd all rather be living in?" On January 12, 2011, Rise Against announced the release date of Endgame as March 15, 2011.
Rise Against's seventh studio album wwas announed on May 22, 2013 and was released on July 15, 2014. The album's first single, "I Don't Want To Be Here Anymore", was released on June 10, 2014. In an interview with Kerrang! Magazine, Tim McIlrath gave an insight into The Black Market and also confirmed five song titles for the new album: "I Don't Want To Be Here Anymore", "The Great Die Off", "People Live Here", "Zero Visibility" and "Awake Too Long." Following the release of The Black Market, Rise Against obtained its second no. 1 on Billboard's Top Rock Albums with 53,000 hits.