Rage Against the Machine : Classic or Dud

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didn't see this one on here and i think it should be. and now that the new rage project has been called off what does everyone think c or d?

Matt, Friday, 21 June 2002 00:00 (eighteen years ago) link

...

Josh, Friday, 21 June 2002 00:00 (eighteen years ago) link

My problem wasn't with RATM's music, but rather with their insufferably pretentious and overbearingly earnest stance -- at its absolute depth on the inside cover art of EVIL EMPIRE (stacks and stacks of paperback book jackets of insurrectionist literature, as if to suggest that they'd obssessively read all that stuff, gone over it with a fine-tooth comb and that YOU SHOULD TOO!!). Even their earlier t-shirts displaying the iconic visage of Che Guevara were insipid -- I wager that nine out of every ten little pukes who sported those t-shirts on a regular basis couldn't tell you who Che Guevara was even if you put a molotov cocktail down their pants. RATM may have preached revolution, but all they were doing ultimately was selling it as an empty fashion statement.

I do believe that Zac DelaRocha bought into all the stuff he was exhorting, though -- maybe that's why he finally opted out: he couldn't bear the hypocrisy of his actions.

Music-wise, I still think the first record holds up (even if it does sound bizarrely dated now). The 2nd and 3rd discs were basically just re- hashes of the first, anyway.

Apparently, Chris Cornell (ex of Soundgarden) who stepped in to fill Zac's shoes has ALREADY SPLIT. The album they recorded together is still slated for release, but there'll be no tour, as supposedly there is no band anymore.....begging the question: what's the point? Why even release it then?

Alex in NYC, Friday, 21 June 2002 00:00 (eighteen years ago) link

I'd still like to hear it. Heh. Besides, the record label wouldn't miss a chance to recoup SOMETHING, right?

Jordan, Friday, 21 June 2002 00:00 (eighteen years ago) link

if they didn't know who che was, how wd putting a molotov cocktail down their pants help? or any other kind of cocktail?

mark s, Friday, 21 June 2002 00:00 (eighteen years ago) link

Anyone ever read Che's Bolivian diaries. About six days before he was shot, his entry starts "Today was a shitty day". The man was a comic genius.

Dom Passantino, Friday, 21 June 2002 00:00 (eighteen years ago) link

The Che Guevara..

4 cl white rum
3 cl of blue curaçao
8 cl of pineapple juice

Decorate with a slice of pineapple.

Billy Dods, Friday, 21 June 2002 00:00 (eighteen years ago) link

RAGTM > Urban *Dance* Squad > Rude Boy > Junkie XL <> Elvis Presley (I am not making a point, I am just reminding myself I fekking missed Junkie XL on Top of the Poops and had to suffer through Moirder The Dance Floor Bitch performance)

nathalie, Friday, 21 June 2002 00:00 (eighteen years ago) link

What I've heard of them has been so goddam humorless and preachy I'm not inclined to seek anything else out. I'm all for politics in music, but RATM strike me as a lowest common denominator (probably the first time I've used that phrase since high school math) version of punk, with no moments of real inspiration. And as dumb slogans go, "Fuck you I won't do what you tell me" just sounds so whiny and pathetic. Even worse, they seem genuinely convinced that they can change the world with their grassroots revolution shtick, despite the fact that most of their fans wouldn't know Noam from Norm.

Justyn Dillingham, Friday, 21 June 2002 00:00 (eighteen years ago) link

He made a couple good points, but his lyrics were too repetitive. Too repetitive. too repetitive. Rally 'round the TV with a six pack full of bud. Come see the buttheads on parade.

Lord Custos III, Friday, 21 June 2002 00:00 (eighteen years ago) link

at least they tried goddamit, at least they did that.

chris sallis, Saturday, 22 June 2002 00:00 (eighteen years ago) link

Yes, but you could say the same about Michael McDonald.

Ned Raggett, Saturday, 22 June 2002 00:00 (eighteen years ago) link

Whoever that is.

chris sallis, Monday, 24 June 2002 00:00 (eighteen years ago) link

CHRIS YOU LUCKY LUCKY MAN.

Dan Perry, Monday, 24 June 2002 00:00 (eighteen years ago) link

one month passes...
Call me fascist but I think these boys are nothing more than pre- packaged commercialised revolution for the kiddies.

I used to like 'em when that first 'incediary' (what - not incendiary at all you mean) album came out but when the second one came out and it was a straight re-hash of the first but without the hooks, originality or tunes I 'woke up' sharp. Jesus, the record execs must have been rubbing their hands when Rage came along - it's all too perfect.

Like everyone here has already said, most of their fans wouldn't know their [namedrop your favourite political commentator stroke revolutionary here] from their [insert name which rhymes with aforementioned here so it seems like you know your shit] but more than that, Rage are offensive in that they proliferate ill-informed extremist politic. Dangerous stuff, especially when you're dealing with impressionable, spotty, 'misunderstood' teenies.

Dud - About as revolutionary as a branch of McDonalds opening down your High Street.

Roger Fascist, Monday, 29 July 2002 00:00 (eighteen years ago) link

three years pass...
first album = Ooooh...this is really good.

every after = Awwww...this is just boring.

Christopher Costello (CGC), Sunday, 26 March 2006 05:11 (fourteen years ago) link

I'd narrow that down to "first coupla dozen PLAYINGS of first album" myself. Tho I still like the tunes in which they alternate between uptempo "funk" and way-slow drop-D tuned stuff with chanting on top.

Myonga Von Bontee (Myonga Von Bontee), Sunday, 26 March 2006 09:55 (fourteen years ago) link

i actually like 'em. alex in nyc basically otm though upthread.

first album holds up the best.

latebloomer: My name *COCKS SHOTGUN* is Horace! (latebloomer), Sunday, 26 March 2006 11:31 (fourteen years ago) link

Evil Empire will always be a guilty pleasure for me. Yes, their sloganeering over-the-topness wears a little thin, but come on, this shit is fun to sing along to and there are some fabulous hooks. Cut 'em some slack, will ya? I bet if Ian MacKaye had been the lead guy nobody would point out how "repetitive" it was...

Doctor Casino (Doctor Casino), Sunday, 26 March 2006 16:47 (fourteen years ago) link

I met their investment advisor/stockbroker back in the 90s. "Oh I work with this rock band maybe you've heard of them?" Hahaha. Hey even anti-capitalist revolutionaries need nest eggs ;-)

gorkom geddo (lovebug starski), Sunday, 26 March 2006 17:15 (fourteen years ago) link

nine months pass...
I think that the generalization of most people who listen to RATM don't know the basics of the band they're supporting is true, but that is also something you can say for every band/group/political movement/idea/regime, truth be known the majority of the world lives in a place where these ideas behind these things simply do not matter or they have no way or no motivation of finding the information. But, when one of these things happens people will flock to it if they believe its right, and what they perceive is right depends on the information that they know and the information that is presented to them by the band/group/etc and the fashion it is presented in, and often times people will know at least a small part of the information but not know how to use it or express their ideas about it, RATM simply takes the problems that common people have and expresses it in a way that involves the highly political yet simple understanding nature of the music and the people, to say that just because their followers were not knowledgeable that the band is bad implies that only good bands have knowledgeable listeners, that is simply not true, all good band/group/etc takes the unknowledgeables and the knowledgeables alike and expresses their beliefs in a way that people can relate to. At the time there was some political unrest(which there is even more now so I am very surprised to see another group with political motiffs) and RATM simply gathered the thoughts at the time and expanded them, and that is where people are not giving them credit, sure now you look back and say well that wasn't the best idea, or that wasn't the best line or whatever, but back then you were fucking rocking to it because you believed every single line of every song, and the reason you can't relate to it now is because the ideas behind it are solved or have diminished over the years and are forgotten, and RATM's music was based on this feeling of outrage and pent-up violence the American people had inside them. To say that the music itself was not appealing to you, I can see that, but to say that the lyrics and ideas of RATM were false, that is wrong. This is one of the few successful political bands that has made it over 5 years, and that in itself is an accomplishment, the ability to connect the revolutionary ideas to the commonfolk for so long and be able to have them follow you is what political rock is all about. In its genre it was probably one of the best, overall maybe not.
Now here are two other problems I have with the posts above; the lack of knowledge of RATM, and the repetitive or unoriginality of their music. First, the lack of knowledge, while I am not 100% sure of Delarocha or Wilkes or the other guy, I do know that Morello graduated from Harvard with a degree in political science, so at most their information was coming from one of the best educated and best informed men in the country, and I'm assuming Delarocha was street born and raised so he may not have been the most educated person, but he was able to take Morello's knowledge of the politics and regimes and underlying motives that were happening at the time and put his idea into it and translate it into something that most people can relate to, and as far as the post above about Evil Empire cover with all the books, I'm going to have to agree and say that there is no way they read all those, but that does not mean that they can't understand the ideas behind them, but I haven't seen the picture myself so I can't say if there may be some symbolism behind it or if its there for the reason someone already posted. Second, repetitive and unoriginality, I'm not going to exactly speak out against this but just remind people that you have a tendency to take songs that you may have liked and pick out all of the bad parts and publicize them, especially when everyone else is doing it as well. There are plenty of other songs that are just as repetitive and unoriginal but I bet that some of you wouldn't bash them as hard or would even admit to liking them, also some of the repetition emphasizes certain parts of the song, and there is also a form of writing, though unpopular to some (Faulkner anyone, well I don't like him at least, and no its not because I'm from the south) called stream of consciousness, ever been mad and just said the same thing over and over in you head, or envision the same thing over and over, just wishing it would happen, this is what Delarocha is trying to hit home with, getting inside your head and putting that line in and making you think it over and over to implant his ideas into you and make you envision them. Jesus Christ that was a long reply, but anyways bash them if you think they're ideas are too extreme, or you simply aren't into their style of rock, but not if you think they're uninformed, repetitive, unoriginal, or otherwise lacking what makes RATM themselves(double RATM would have looked weird), just a thought for you to think about...

nathan howell (sccrocker), Thursday, 4 January 2007 04:53 (thirteen years ago) link

i'm way too lazy to read any of that.
i like "bulls on parade".

Christopher Costello (CGC), Thursday, 4 January 2007 05:41 (thirteen years ago) link

I'm more befuddled over the fact that Dan apparently didn't like Michael McDonald, I thought he was a huge fan!

Ned Raggett (Ned), Thursday, 4 January 2007 05:44 (thirteen years ago) link

ha, "Taking It To The Streets" should be a cover for the inevitable RATM reunion, c. 2010

timmy tannin (pompous), Thursday, 4 January 2007 05:49 (thirteen years ago) link

RATM:s first album was probably what got me into politics, punk and hardcore. I had the che-tshirt and that. After beeing bit of a preacher for some time, rioting in the streets, I in later years have been involved in a workers union (which is fairly productive)and studying economics, political science and so on.

So for me (and some of my friends), it was a very influencial record. To bad it really really sucks.

jon person (jon person), Thursday, 4 January 2007 14:07 (thirteen years ago) link

but anyways bash them if you think they're ideas are too extreme, or you simply aren't into their style of rock, but not if you think they're uninformed, repetitive, unoriginal, or otherwise lacking what makes RATM themselves

You talk like this at parties, don't you?

I thought RATM had some interesting grooves and riffs, but Zac always spoiled things for me. There seemed to be a conscious decision of "I can't sing OR rap, so I'll split the difference with this spoken-word thing, and make just enough oblique hip-hop references that people refer to me as a rapper".

Tantrum The Cat (Tantrum The Cat), Thursday, 4 January 2007 15:29 (thirteen years ago) link

So for me (and some of my friends), it was a very influencial record. To bad it really really sucks.

See, this is a judgment I'm all for.

Ned Raggett (Ned), Thursday, 4 January 2007 15:44 (thirteen years ago) link

I think it's time to break ILX again and go back to the sandbox.

Dr. C (Dr. C), Thursday, 4 January 2007 15:58 (thirteen years ago) link

ever been mad and just said the same thing over and over in you head ever been mad and just said the same thing over and over in you head ever been mad and just said the same thing over and over in you head ever been mad and just said the same thing over and over in you head ever been mad and just said the same thing over and over in you head ever been mad and just said the same thing over and over in you head ever been mad and just said the same thing over and over in you head ever been mad and just said the same thing over and over in you head ever been mad and just said the same thing over and over in you head ever been mad and just said the same thing over and over in you head

Fuck You I Won't Do My Homework Mom (noodle vague), Thursday, 4 January 2007 16:03 (thirteen years ago) link

in response to Tantrum the Cat, no at parties it'd be more like "hell fuckin yea dude ___rocks/sux" but you can't talk like that on the internet or people immediately disregard your opinion...

nathan howell (sccrocker), Friday, 5 January 2007 05:15 (thirteen years ago) link

I always liked RATM, from the first album right through to the last one. They were, and remain however, a hard band to like because of all the contradictions they embodied; contradictions which sometimes smacked of hypocrisy. It's hard to take a band preaching revolution seriously when they're signed to one of the largest record companies in the world. However, I do think that the band, and Zack in particular, struggled with the same questions that some of their fans did. A cursory glance around my campus bar circa 1997 revealed that most people who professed to like Rage couldn't have cared less about their politics. "Killing in the name" was the point in the night when the meatheads started butting chests and chanting the refrain at the top of their lungs. And yet, I can't help but feel that they did turn some people onto some ideas, or points of view that they maybe hadn't previously considered. I know people who went out and tracked down some of the books depicted in the "Evil Empire" cover art. Their lack of subtlety is a common knock agains them, but how subtle can you be in the context of a rock album? Ultimately, what prevented me from condemning them as hypocrites is that I really felt that they believed in the things that they spoke/sang/preached about. Zack didn't just mention the uprising in Chiapas to freak peoples' parents out. Between records he was down there working with the Zapatistas, and grass-roots indigenous groups. It wasn't just some ploy to sell records.

As far as the music, "Evil Empire" has always been my favourite. "The Battle of Los Angeles" has some enjoyable moments, but it sounds like a band that had pretty much run out of new ideas. The highly-regarded first album always sounded a bit awkward to me. The "hip hop" was grafted somewhat artificially on the "rock". You can listen to it and almost hear Tom and Zack fighting about what direction the song should take. On "Evil Empire" they found their sound. It's tighter, and sounds more like RATM than a collage of influences. It was one of my favourite albums of '96, and although I don't play it much anymore, when my iPod randomly plays one of the tracks off of it, I find that they still sound alright.

J-rock (Julien Sandiford), Friday, 5 January 2007 09:27 (thirteen years ago) link

eleven months pass...

So they're doing the big European festivals next year then. Oh well.

"
RAGE AGAINST THE MACHINE TO HEADLINE
Rock Am Ring AND Rock Im Park FESTIVALS

Rage Against The Machine are back and have confirmed their headline appearances.

After a longer absence the band will finally be back at Ring & Park,
after delivering legendary gigs in 1994, 1996 and the year 2000.
More Info coming soon!!

Play Dates:
Rock Am Ring - June 6th
Rock Im Park - June 7th
"

StanM, Thursday, 6 December 2007 19:46 (twelve years ago) link

they had some wicked mosh pit riffs

M@tt He1ges0n, Thursday, 6 December 2007 20:33 (twelve years ago) link

Several years on, I find myself enjoying "Killing (In The Name Of)" again.

HI DERE, Thursday, 6 December 2007 20:48 (twelve years ago) link

their s/t was one of the first cds i ever bought.

i actually still like them a fair amount, but i dont think any of their shit is as good as

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/f/fc/NoSpiritualSurrender.jpg

max, Thursday, 6 December 2007 20:52 (twelve years ago) link

never a dud single, albums all pretty solid - hard to think of another '90s superstar rock act that has held up as well

milo z, Thursday, 6 December 2007 20:59 (twelve years ago) link

i got pepper sprayed at the DNC in 2000. so DUD

carne asada, Thursday, 6 December 2007 21:23 (twelve years ago) link

not spent much time with the album as a whole, but 'people of the sun' and 'Bulls On Parade' still sound phenomenal. love their first and third LPs too.

stevie, Thursday, 6 December 2007 22:00 (twelve years ago) link

sorry, i meant i hadn't spent much time with 'evil empire', their second.

stevie, Thursday, 6 December 2007 22:01 (twelve years ago) link

evil empire is actually pretty good, it's their most tightly wound and pissed-off sounding album.

latebloomer, Thursday, 6 December 2007 22:01 (twelve years ago) link

Those who died are justified, for wearing the badge, they're the chosen whites.
You justify those that died by wearing the badge, they're the chosen whites.
Those who died are justified, for wearing the badge, they're the chosen whites.
You justify those that died by wearing the badge, they're the chosen whites.
Come on!

Yeah! Come on!

FUCK YOU, I WON'T DO WHAT YOU TELL ME!
FUCK YOU, I WON'T DO WHAT YOU TELL ME!

Wrinklepaws, Thursday, 6 December 2007 22:18 (twelve years ago) link

as incisive as it is catchy. you go girl!

latebloomer, Thursday, 6 December 2007 22:27 (twelve years ago) link

I enjoy humiliating creepy CG Tom Morello in Guitar Hero.

Lie Bot, Thursday, 6 December 2007 22:58 (twelve years ago) link

they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites
they're the chosen whites

http://www.islammonitor.org/uploads/pics/kkk3.jpg

stephen, Thursday, 6 December 2007 23:08 (twelve years ago) link

dud. Morello's riffs were occasionally catchy but often were extremely boring and unimaginative, Zach's flow stunk, and his voice was annoying.

Content-wise it's nothing I couldn't have gotten from Noam Chomsky

Bo Jackson Overdrive, Friday, 7 December 2007 00:18 (twelve years ago) link

Killing in the Name of and Bulls on Parade were kinda fun tho

Bo Jackson Overdrive, Friday, 7 December 2007 00:19 (twelve years ago) link

one year passes...

haha you've got a bullet in your fucking head

\∫Öζ/.... argh oh noes! (ken c), Wednesday, 18 March 2009 13:10 (eleven years ago) link

Oh MAN does this group suck. They've ridden the SAME three songs and have made the same album out of them THREE times. And their rich, privileged white fans eat it up, yo. Spare me.

ilxor, Thursday, 26 March 2009 03:25 (eleven years ago) link

would love to see this rhythm section put to good use

otm morello (Whiney G. Weingarten), Thursday, 26 March 2009 03:36 (eleven years ago) link

what would that possibly be, though?

meat of beef (Jordan), Thursday, 26 March 2009 04:01 (eleven years ago) link

five years pass...

it was a very influencial record. To bad it really really sucks.

pls put this on the reissue sticker (whenever that happens)

getting strange ass all around the globe (Neanderthal), Saturday, 10 May 2014 19:08 (six years ago) link

six years pass...

someone puts on rage songs at the gym in the morning and like holy shit they were awesome weren't they.

Give me a Chad Smith-type feel (map), Thursday, 15 October 2020 18:43 (one week ago) link

they have aged really well to my ears. i was not a fan at the time. that kind of thing was not my speed. but god they sound refreshing in a playlist of .. whatever new aggressive trash kids like in 2020.

Give me a Chad Smith-type feel (map), Thursday, 15 October 2020 18:47 (one week ago) link

i was feeling very "rage against the machine" yesterday, haven't listened to em in years but maybe i should.

brimstead, Thursday, 15 October 2020 19:30 (one week ago) link

Renegades is (mostly) extremely fun imo. underrated!

it bangs for thee (Simon H.), Thursday, 15 October 2020 19:35 (one week ago) link

Their cover of "Renegades of Funk" is pretty awesome.

birdistheword, Thursday, 15 October 2020 23:16 (one week ago) link


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