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Rage Against the Machine - Eponymous

You've Got a Bullet in Your F---ing Head
by: bill aicher

Are you looking for a wake-up call?  Rage Against the Machine may be the band to give you the swift kick in the nuts you were looking for.  This LA-based band mixes hard rock, rap, and funk to create a sound that is all their own.  Their political overtones may lead you to think they are just trying to push a meaningless cause, but the band is smarter than that.

Zach de la Rocha is a smart man.  Despite his looks, and usage of expletives, this man knows what is going on.  So what if they hate the government?  They are out to get a message to their fans.  Tracks with titles such as "Killing in the Name", "Take the Power Back", "Township Rebellion", and "Freedom" may help you get an idea of what they are all about.  However, this is all set over what is one of the most unique musical sounds.

Rage mixes elements from some fairly distant genres.  Tom Morello (a Harvard graduate) offers excellent crunch guitar to set the power mood; as well as the slow, introspective riff in the emotional "Settle for Nothing".  His guitar solos are excellent, with their original riffs.  Timmy C's bassline gives the music a hard edge, setting it apart from some other hard rock bands, new to this style, like Korn. 

The finishing touch to this band is Zach de la Rocha.  His vocal style is just awesome.    Unlike most rock bands, he does not really sing, he raps.  The rap style mixed over the crunch guitar and driving bassline make for one great sound.  To go along with the rap sound, tracks such as "Bombtrack" offer up a sound like scratching on vinyl. 

This album is by far Rage's best effort.  They released their second album, Evil Empire, in 1996 which, although also a great album, lacked some of the originality and raw emotion in their self-titled release.  Their third album is slated for a November 25, 1998 release date (Note - it actually came out 11.02.99 and is called The Battle of Los Angelese - click here for a review)..  I am looking forward to this new album, as their very latest work is the best I have heard thus far - "No Shelter" on the Godzilla soundtrack.

Artist Rage Against the Machine
Album Eponymous
Label Epic / Sony
Date 11.10.92
Web Homepage
Rating

4.5 out of 5.0