Rage Against the Machine (formed 1991) Rage Against the Machine is a Californian rock band known for its blend of different genres, including hip-hop, metal and funk.
Formation: In 1991, Tom Morello attended a club in Los Angeles where Zach De La Rocha was freestyle rapping. Impressed by his lyrics, Morello asked De La Rocha to form a band with him. He then invited Brad Wilk to play drums and Zach invited his friend Tim Commerford to play bass.
Rage Against The Machine's debut gig was in Orange County, California, at a house party.
The band were soon pursued by a number of major labels and eventually signed to Epic Records and their debut album, Rage Against the Machine was released in 1992.
Rage Against the Machine: Record Releases and Notable Moments
Rage Against the Machine's debut, eponymous album achieved triple platinum status, largely owing to the success of the single, 'Killing In the Name'. The band toured extensively to promote the album, playing at 1993's Lollapalooza and supporting Suicidal Tendencies.
The follow-up to Rage Against the Machine was Evil Empire, which entered the US album charts at number one in 1996. In April that year, the band performed 'Bulls On Parade' on the hit US TV show Saturday Night Live. The band's performance was cut from two songs to one, when they attempted to hang inverted American flags from their speakers as a protest against the Republican politician Steve Forbes, who was also a guest on the show that night.
In 1997, Rage Against the Machine supported U2 on their PopMart tour. The band donated all their proceeds to social organizations, including U.N.I.T.E. and Women Alive.
Whilst the band toured Japan, Sony released a bootleg album of B-sides and live recordings, entitled Live & Rare.
The band's next studio album, The Battle of Los Angeles, was released in 1999. This album also went straight to number one and soon achieved double-platinum status. The song 'Wake Up' was featured on the soundtrack to the Matrix and 'Calm Like A Bomb' was included on the soundtrack to the sequel, The Matrix Reloaded.
The band's final studio album, Renegades, was a compilation of cover versions, featuring songs by Devo, MC5 and Cypress Hill. Renegades was released shortly after Zach de la Rocha announced that he would be leaving the band. Following Renegades, a live video, The Battle of Mexico City was released, as well as a live album, Live at the Grand Olympic Auditorium, which was a recording of the band's final two live dates, in Los Angeles, in September 2000.
The Breakup: It was rumoured that the remaining three members would replace de La Rocha and potential candidates for the role included Chuck D of Public Enemy, Rey Oropeza of downst and B-Real of Cypress Hill.
Instead, Commerford, Wilk and Morello formed a band with Chris Cornell, formerly of Soundgarden. They named the band Audioslave.
In 2003, Morello began his own solo career, playing political acoustic music at open-mic nights. He supported Billy Bragg on the Tell Us the Truth Tour and released a solo album One Man Revolution in 2007
Zach de La Rocha has worked with a number of artists, including Trent Reznor (of Nine Inch Nails), DJ Shadow and ?uestlove.
The Reunion: In 2007, Rage Against the Machine headlined the final day of the Coachella festival. Initially thought to be a one-off, de la Rocha and Morello went on to perform acoustically at the Coalition of Immokalee Workers rally in Chicago. The band have continued to tour the USA, Australia and Japan, with plans to tour in Europe, but have evaded confirming that they will be writing a new album together.
Could Black Sabbath battle to the top of the charts?
Black Sabbath are back and it looks like they're back with a bang too, with the metal overlords looking set to score their first number one on the album chart in 43 years. 13 was released at the beginning of this week and it has been slowly creeping up the charts, and it could have a good chance of reaching the coveted spot by the end of the week.The album - the first to feature the (mostly) original lineup of Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi and Geezer Butler (drummer Burt Ward was forced to sit out the recording process because of health reasons) in 35-years - currently sits at the top of the mid-week charts, however it cannot officially claim to be an official number one until the end of the week. With no real threat in the charts to challenge it for the top spot - bar Liam Gallagher’s Beady Eye perhaps - so it looks like the band may be on to recreate the feat their 1970 album Paranoid.
The album was produced by acclaimed Def Jam co-founder Rick Rubin and features Rage Against The Machine’s Brad Wilkes sitting in for Ward, and critics are hailing the album as a return to the doom-laded guitar riffs of the band's classic albums from the 70's. Frontman Osbourne declared his surprise at the album's success earlier today, saying “I can’t believe Black Sabbath may have its first number one album in 43 years.”
The band will continue their world tour in support of the album over the rest of the year, having already played in New Zealand, Australia and parts of Asia. The tour reaches London's O2 Arena in December and will arrive at Houston's Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavillion on July 25.
It wasn’t only Justin Bieber that the Black Keys had in tears on the evening of the Grammys, it would appear. Mumford & Sons’ bass player Ted Dwayne found himself in tears that night too. Not because either of the Black Keys had been nasty to him but because he’s been a die-hard fan of the band for so long that being sat next to them was a little overwhelming. Not to mention beating his idols to the Album of the Year Grammy.
Speaking to Rolling Stone magazine after their triumph, Dawyne revealed “I remember seeing the Black Keys at a venue twice the size of this dressing room” and added “I was a die-hard fan. It's just so weird being in a category with them. Sitting next to them, these people I've had posters of. I was in tears.” Of course, it wasn’t just the Black Keys that had the British folk band in awe that night. Marcus Mumford told the magazine’s reporter that he was surprised that Jack White was as friendly as he was. And banjo player Winston Marshall was over the moon to meet Rage Against The Machine’s Tom Morello. “I loved Tom Morello. To have him liking our music – apparently he'd been to our gigs – for me was just f***ing surreal. We talk to these people, and whether it's f***ing Jack White or Elton John, they're just lovely people who love music as much as you do."
Mumford And Sons won the Album of the Year Grammy for Babel, their sophomore release.
Continue reading: Why Did The Black Keys Make Mumford And Sons Cry At The Grammys?
With only nine days left until the big day, the race is on to see who will be sitting atop the UK Singles Chart this christmas, with the charity Hillsborough single battling it out with X Factor winner James Arthur for the coveted Christmas No. 1.
Only a few years ago, it was pretty much a given that the festive number one spot would go to The X Factor or Pop Idol/Popstars winner, however the competition has gotten a little more heated in recent years for for a number of reasons, and unlike before there is an air of uncertainty as to who will walk away with this year's number one spot at Christmas.
Girls Aloud were the first to do it back in 2002, when 'Sound in the Underground' took the Yuletide top spot. Then, from Shayne Ward in 2005 to Alexandra Burke in 2008, Simon Cowell's creations had that top spot wrapped up like dad's songs on Christmas Eve. That all changed when a successful Facebook campaign saw Rage Against The Machine's 1991 debut single 'Killing In The Name' take the top spot away from that years' winner, and thus outrage erupted (even though all profits RATM made were donated to charity, as opposed to Simon Cowell's already bulging wallet). Even though Matt Cardle managed to come up trumps the next year with 'When We Collide,' 2011 again saw a change in the wind when the choir ensemble Military Wives with Gareth Malone took the Xmas top spot with their rendition of 'Wherever You Are.' This time round though, SiCo was a little more forgiving.
Continue reading: Christmas Number One: The Race Is On
David Gray has called for greater examination of the playing of loud music - including his own song Babylon - during torture at Guantanamo Bay.
Suspected terrorist detainees are repeatedly subjected to loud music during interrogation at Guantanamo and other US bases with a wide variety of songs used, from heavy metal acts such as Metallica and Rage Against The Machine, to hip-hop stars such as Eminem and Dr Dre to novelty tracks such as the theme song for Barney the dinosaur.
But speaking on BBC Radio 4's World Tonight programme, Gray called for greater public discussion of the matter.
"Only the novelty aspect of this story gets it noticed... Guantanamo greatest hits," he said.
"What we're talking about here is people in a darkened room, physically inhibited by handcuffs, bags over their heads and music blaring at them."
"That is nothing but torture."
He continued: "It doesn't matter what the music is - it could be Tchaikovsky's finest or it could be Barney the Dinosaur.
"It really doesn't matter, it's going to drive you completely nuts.
"No-one wants to even think about it or discuss the fact that we've gone above and beyond all legal process and we're torturing people," he added.
The charity Reprieve, which was associated with the recent Meltdown festival curated by Massive Attack, has created a petition to encourage artists to ban their music being used in the situations discussed by Gray.
Continue reading: David Gray Warns Of Music Use In Guantanamo Torture