So I transfered colleges and I came back home and I was looking for something to do since I haven’t been back in a while and I remember running to the homie Andy from high school at this bar. We chilling and talking and he said something about the song that was playing in the bar and I had no fucking clue who made the song. He looked at me so crazy like “You can’t be serious.” Sadly I was. I had no idea what the song was.
He said “You never heard Rage Against The Machine” he calmly told me “Go listen to the first album then come back and tell me what you think of it.” That was the end of the conversation about Rage Against The Machine that night. He was so confident that if I heard this album that it would change my life. Now up to this point the only rock music I ever liked or listened to was Linkin Park and N.E.R.D, and that was it. I didn’t really care much for rock music. It wasn’t bad or anything like that. I just didn’t care to search for it.
I went and bought the album and I didn’t listen to it for almost 2 weeks. It was just sitting in my desk still unopened. One day I was cleaning and I found it and forgot I bought it and figured today would be the day that I would listen to it. I put it in my laptop and just let it play.
That bass. That god damn bass. Before a word was even said Timmy C had me. Never did I expect to hear that kinda funk on a rock album. It was the LAST thing I saw coming. I’ve never heard funk blended in with a metal sound before. I seriously had no clue what the fuck was going on. I wanted to jump out of my fucking window and run around the block because of what I was hearing. Not only that I kept rewinding to see what was being said. The whole time this song is playing I keep telling myself “Did he say what I think he just said?” He was speaking REAL shit. I’m talking he could get sniped by the government type real shit. I never heard lyrics like this over rock music. It was so incredible to me. I can’t really describe the feeling hearing it. I would say it’s close to a human eating tacos for the first time. It’s fucking euphoric. This was the day I first heard Rage Against The Machine.
I ran into Andy again soon after I finally heard the album he recommended and he was like "You really listened to it. That's what's up!" I probably played Rage Against The Machine for a year straight. I'm talking everyday I played a RATM song. I didn't give a fuck what mood I was in. I'm playing Rage. It could be my wedding anniversary, I don't care I'm playing "Know Your Enemy" and who knows my future wife might become my enemy so the song might be fitting.
They weren’t cliche rock stars. They stood for something. They had a message that everyone needed to hear. They were so angry but it was needed. All of them would perform angry as fuck. It was so infectious. Their music could literally make Jesus flip over a police car and piss on it. The passion they put in every song they created was so admirable. I literally went out and bought the rest of their albums after hearing the debut. I was officially in rock history class. I felt so bad that I didn’t know their music while it was fresh. The only time I ever heard their music was on Tony Hawk Pro Skater. When I heard "Guerrilla Radio” once I made it to “The Battle Of Los Angeles” album I was like “Damn I did fake 900’s to this song on the Tony Hawk game.”
The deeper I got into their music and it became normal to me the more and more I appreciated them. They were very original. Like I said before I never heard anyone like them. They were 100% live. No DJ, no beat/drum machines. All those sounds you heard came from instruments which is mind boggling. Their chemistry was so organic. Everything they did was layered perfectly and they complimented each other so effortlessly. It’s like a perfect offense in any sport. They knew where each other would be with their eyes closed. That’s how well they played together. They are the ultimate song finishers. The climax of their songs would make you feel so many emotions. Remember when Iron Man saved the world in the first Avengers movie by taking that missile and flying up as high into space as he could until he couldn’t anymore? That’s what Rage does on their climaxes. They will take you up to this insane height and just drop you and make you wonder what the fuck did they just hit you with?
Zach’s aggressive, passionate, delivery reminded me of a activist that really walked the walk and cared for the people. He was just so vivid, animated, and poetic with his lyricism that even his enemies would find a tough time saying he isn’t a special man. He just got better album after album. He truly came into his own on their last album. He picked his spots on where to be aggressive, he took more risks, he started to fall back and let the song do the heavy lifting and would just coast the track on certain tracks. It was like Rage hit their final form on Battle Of L.A on some Cell from Dragonball Z shit.
Tom Morello is my generations Jimi Hendrix. He’s one of the greatest guitar players in history. I’m still in awe of the sounds he is able to get out of his guitar. I think what really made Tom special was that he really put an emphasis on sound. Most guitar players just want to shred but Tom was like a chemist with his craft. I would hear these sounds and it would perfectly sum up how I felt. "Ashes Of The Fall” is a good example of that. Tom was basically the dj of the band. His performance on Battle Of LA is one of the greatest performances on an album ever.
Brad Wilk is one of the most underrated drummers in rock history. The way he can drum in any way you want and do it masterfully is dope. He can find any groove. He could probably play in any genre.
Tim Cummerford brought that soul to the band. He is a complete bassist if I ever saw one. The rhythms he would play were so funky. The note choices he would make would amaze anyone.
They didn’t hide. They didn’t sugar coat shit. They were blunt. They didn’t give a fuck. They just wanted to wake up the sheep. They wanted to show us that things are not what they seem. Giving us commentary on topics like colonialism, racism, capitalism, military industrial complex, they left no stone unturned. They taught me ...
Fuck the status quo
Fuck control systems
Fuck amerikkka's idea of freedom
Freedom? Yeah right.
Thank you RATM
If you never listened to these legends and wanna listen to Rage Against The Machine on the real just listen to all 3 of their albums but if you need songs I’ll give you my 10 favorite songs.
Born Of A Broken Man
Bulls On Parade
Bullet In The Head
People Of The Sun