Rage Against the Machine News

Rage in Rolling Stone's "150 Essential Records of the 90s" - 4-22-99

There isn't an order, but RATM's debut album is on the list:

"Rage Against The Machine
Rage Against The Machine
Epic, November 1992

"Anger is a gift," vocalist Zack de la Rocha proclaims in a venemous whisper in "Freedom," and Rage Against The Machine spread the wealth around, with an electrifying vengeance, all over the rest of their debut album.  Gunning de la Rocha's incantory rapping with rib-rattling slam, Rage Against The Machine get hot and nasty about authority with acute lyric detail and stunning force.  Rage Against The Machine's mix of radical politics and headbanging kicks was a startling anomaly amid the self-absorbed ennui of the Year Grunge Broke.  But the album's commercial success was a crucial reaffirmation of rock's potency as a weapon of protest.  With Rage Against The Machine, subversion - in the great, defiant tradition of The Clash and the MC5 - was alive, and thrilling, in the mainstream."

There is also a quote by Zack: "We're not going to play to the mainstream. We're going to hijack it."

Thanks to David de Sola for this info.

Rage Playing "Millions for Mumia" on April 24th - 4-18-99

Rage is playing at Philadelphia City Hall on Saturday, April 24th, at 12:00pm. The show coincides with the Millions for Mumia rally taking place to gain a fair trial, and no execution for political prisoner Mumia Abu-Jamal. Check Mumia.org for more info.

On April 12, Zack de la Rocha addressed the United Nation's International Commission of Human Rights in Geneva, Switzerland on the case of Mumia Abu-Jamal and the death penalty. The Commission agreed to meet with Zack at the command of the Humanitarian Law Project, a non-governmental group that consults the UN on worldwide compliance of human rights law.  Zack will be on stage describing his testimony and other activism.

Rage Playing Tibetan Freedom Concert - 4-17-99

Rage Against the Machine will playing at the Amsterdam Tibetan Freedom Concert, in Amsterdam, Netherlands @ RAI Parkhal on June 13th, along with Ben Harper, Joe Strummer and the Mascaleros, and Thom York.

The concerts will span 4 continents on the same day, with other artists like the Beastie Boys, The Roots, Live, Blondie, and Eddie Vedder. - (Thanks to War_Nerve for this info)

Zack denounces Kosovo bombing, relates them to Mumia - 4/9/99

In a statement issued by his publicists, de la Rocha denounced the bombings in Kosovo. He compared the Western allies' campaign to the death sentence of Pennsylvania prison inmate Mumia Abu-Jamal. Abu-Jamal, a Philadelphia radio journalist, was convicted in 1981 of murdering police officer Daniel Faulkner. Abu-Jamal's lawyers -- and the members of rock-rap band Rage -- have fought for a new trial, citing procedural errors and institutional racism.

"The U.S. has made a business out of violating the human rights of the world community," de la Rocha, 28, said. "A crime is a crime regardless of the tools used in the trade, whether it's a stealth bomber over Belgrade or a sham trial and a syringe in Philadelphia. Both murder innocent civilians, both are premeditated, and both are gross violations of international law."

Zack to speak to UN concerning Mumia Abu-Jamal - 4/9/99

Zack de la Rocha will head to Geneva, Switzerland, next week to address the United Nation's International Commission of Human Rights about the case of convicted killer Mumia Abu-Jamal.

De la Rocha will also use his speech on April 12 to discuss America's use of the death penalty with the commission, which agreed to hear the vocalist at the behest of the Humanitarian Law Project, a non-governmental group that consults the U.N. on worldwide compliance of human rights laws. This continues to support Rage Against the Machine's vocalation against the imprisonment of Mumia Abu-Jamal.

Rage confirmed for "Woodstock 99", Tom Morello chat - 4/8/99

Rage has been confirmed to headline the "Woodstock" festival during it's duration from July 23-25 in Rome, New York, along with bands like Korn, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Dave Matthews Band, Aerosmith, and a slew of others. The festival - a corporate scheme to celebrate the 30 year anniversary of the original "Woodstock" festival which was known for it's huge, drug-induced fanbase, and the ultra-liberal lifestyle it endorsed - is designed to capture the hearts of thousands of musically, and culturally recusant teenagers, while simultaneously encouraging them to purchase products which sponser the event.

Also, the chat with Tom Morello on RATM.com was "very successful", and a transcript will posted on the site, as well as on this site "soon". Zack is approximately 1/3 done with vocals. Journalists and whatnot are slating September 21st as a "tentative" release date for the new album - which means, of course, that it is completely inaccurate, and they don't know when it's going to be released.

Rage on "The Matrix", Woodstock 99 - 4/5/99

Apparently, at the end of the Keanu Reeves film "The Matrix", Rage's "Wake Up" is played during the last scene. Very exciting stuff.

Rage is also rumoured to be joining Woodstock 99. The official nature of this will be revealed on Thursday.

New album update - 3/26/99

Some bad news Gavin Rattmann recieved from Epic - Zack has only done the lyrics for 5 of 15 songs. There is no release date, and no title. It won't be released probably for two months AFTER they announce the release date - which hasn't been announced yet. Possibly Tom will announce it during the live chat at RATM.com on April 8th...? Maybe.

Rage playing FujiFest - 3/25/99

An all-star cast of bands has already signed up to play the third-annual Fuji Rock Fest in Niigata, Japan, from July 30-Aug. 1. According to the fest's official website, performers will include: Blur, Phish, Black Crowes, Chemical Brothers, Limp Bizkit, Rage Against The Machine, Boredoms, Catatonia, ex- Clash singer Joe Strummer, Rocket From the Crypt, Atari Teenage Riot, Skunk Anansie, a reunited Happy Mondays, the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, Tricky and Underworld."

Zack on "The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly" - 3/25/99

Zack de la Rocha is the latest luminary to sign on for the Dan "The Automator" Nakamura/Prince Paul project, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, a sonic college of experimental music, which will also feature De La Soul, Cornershop and the Wu-Tang Clan's RZA and possibly Method Man. The Rage Against the Machine frontman will contribute rhymes and such to a yet-untitled track some time this week or next. Nakamura says the yet-untitled track includes beats and harpsichords and will probably be augmented with guitars later on. "It's pretty...I wanna say gothic, but that's a really bad word [to describe it]," says Nakamura. "It's nothing like that, but it's rich." The project will be released on Dreamworks at the end of the year.

Mumia Benefit Funds Earmarked for Cops' Families - 3/23/99

From addictedtonoise.com:

The New Jersey state Senate voted unanimously Monday to use $65,000 raised by the state-owned Continental Airlines Arena during a benefit concert for convicted cop killer Mumia Abu-Jamal to aid families of police officers killed in the line of duty. The measure now moves to the state Assembly, according to Pete Cammarano, spokesperson for the bill's sponsor, Sen. Richard Codey. Rage Against the Machine and the Beastie Boys headlined the controversial show in January, which raised $500,000 for Abu-Jamal's defense fund. Abu-Jamal, who has maintained his innocence, is on death row for the 1981 murder of Philadelphia police officer Daniel Faulkner.

Brenden O'brian - 3-18-99

"...Stone Temple Pilots plans to record their next album quickly, just as they did with their second album Purple. "They've been in rehearsals for the last month. They're going into the studio with [producer] Brendan O'Brien to start making the record a week from Thursday. We're looking for a late-July, early-August [release]."

This could be a hint to the fact that Brenden is done with his work from Rage...?

Lots of updates - 3-17-99

Tom Morello takes home California Music Award

When Rage Against Machine guitarist/conscience Tom Morello took home a California Music Award (the award formerly know as a Bammie) for Outstanding Guitarist on Saturday night (March 13), he seized the opportunity to thank his fans for voting for him. They are, he gushed, "the real experts." Afterward, the slight and be-hatted musician was just as enthusiastic about his own particular fanaticism -- his love of Star Trek. "Yeah, I had a part in the last Star Trek film; I was Extra Number 72," he says. "I wasn't nervous at all. I loved it. Will I act again? Yeah, for the next Star Trek movie." But what about his main job? Rage's upcoming album had been scheduled for June but was recently taken off the schedule. "It'll be done when it's done," says Morello. "But it's not done yet. But I will tell you we're going to play a couple of festivals, including Woodstock" . . .

Some updates on RATM.com

RATM.com has been updated with some new articles about the Mumia Abu-Jamal benefit, as well as some pictures from the event. There is a small note from Tom, as well as a bulletin announcing a live chat with Tom on April 8th, from 5:00pm (pst)/ 8:00pm (est). It will last for one hour.

Rumours about the new album

Some rumours have been floating around saying that Rage's new album is being PRESSED right now. The source is thought to be legit, but there is no positive way to know until word from the band is recieved. No "official" dates. I'm not going to post the rumor dates, because that just instills hype, that falls away.

Rage not on Ozzfest - 3-10-99

Rage is not scheduled to play Ozzfest.

Rage on "Matrix" soundtrack - 2-27-99

From Rocktropolis:

"...The Matrix soundtrack also includes a new track from Ministry ("Bad Blood," from the forthcoming Dark Side of the Spoon), and a healthy dose of undead rock tracks from Prodigy ("Mindfields"), Rob Zombie ("Dragula" [Hot Rod Herman Remix]), Rage Against the Machine ("Wake Up"), Monster Magnet ("Look To Your Orb For Warning"), the Deftones ("My Own Summer [Shove It]"), Rammstein ("Du Hast"), Propellerheads ("Spybreak!"), Meat Beat Manifesto ("Prime Audio Soup"), Lunatic Calm ("Leave You Far Behind"), among others. The Matrix soundtrack hits stores March 30 on Maverick Recordings. The film, starring Keanu Reeves and Laurence Fishburne, hits theaters on March 31."

Some rumours about touring - 2/3/99

From JamTV.com:

OzzFest Courts Rage Against the Machine

Everyone paid to keep their mouth shut is neither confirming nor denying it, but less conflicted sources (with lest vested interest) at several booking agencies say Rage Against the Machine is indeed the frontrunner to headline this summer's annual OzzFest.

"People are waiting to see what Rage is gonna do, which is certainly a key element in what's going on [with the festival]," says a manager of a band in contention to play during the tour. Part of the hold-up may be the tenuous state of the forthcoming Rage album, which may not be ready for release when the tour rolls out in early July. However, if it is in the can and the grapevine knows of what it speaks, Black Sabbath will co-headline the festival with Rage, with other metallurgical acts like Rammstein and Rob Zombie also vying to share the main stage (Zombie is also in consideration for Lollapalooza, provided there is one).

This one doesn't seem like something to quote by. Wait and see.

Mumia benefit successful - 1/29/99

The Mumia Abu-Jamal benefit went smoothly yesterday. No demonstrations or violence or anything from the police, and there were only 2 arrests at the entire concert (lower than most normal concerts!) Zack released a press statement regarding the concert. A review can be found here.

State against Rage Against the Machine? - 1/28/99
From the Bergen Record...

A bill introduced in the New Jersey legislature Monday would give families of slain cops the state's proceeds from tonight's Rage Against the Machine concert. Organizers of the East Rutherford, N.J., show are donating their profits to death-row inmate Mumia Abu-Jamal, who was condemned for killing a policeman.

Rage in New York Times & The Bergen Record - 1/27/99
From The New York Times...
Raging Against an Unusual Benefit Concert
By Neil Straus

"It's not the first time that Rage Against the Machine has opened up a can of worms by standing up for what we believed in," Morello said from his Manhattan hotel yesterday. "We've had the Ku Klux Klan protest our shows, but I didn't expect this from the Governor of New Jersey's office."

The entire article can be found here. Thanks to Carmine for this info.

Editorials, and Editorial Replies from The Bergen Record...
Benefit Boils Down to Free Speech Issue

"...However, it is also true, as Mr. Verniero said, that this is a free-speech issue, and "we cherish freedom of speech in this country."

Editorial Reply: Don Holmes, Bergenfield

"...If they are holding a benefit concert for Mumia Abu-Jamal, a convicted cop killer, what's next? A bake sale for Charles Manson? Too bad Jeffrey Dahmer is gone; my car could use a wash."

The entire editorial about the concert, and several editorial replies can be found here.

Tom Morello on Howard Stern - 1-26-99

Tom was on the Howard Stern show on KROQ today (1/26/99) debating about the Mumia Abu-Jamal benefit concert situation with widow of Daniel Faulkner, Maureen Faulkner; Abu-Jamal's attorney, Leonard Weinglass; and assistant DA for Philadelphia, PA, Hugh Barns.

They start talking about Mumia approximately around 8:00.00. Tom previously called in KROQ and argued about the case with a KROQ DJ last Friday. The MP3s can be found in the media section.

Thanks to the people of "#Off_Hour_Rockers" on the EFnet for this!

Tom talks about new album - 1-24-99

This from Rocktropolis:

Rage Against The Machine Ready 'Best Record' Yet

What the world needs now is a new Rage Against the Machine record. Or so it seems: with rock and roll in a dismal state and boy-pop bands dominating the charts, a new Rage record could be just what the doctor ordered. And if guitarist Tom Morello has anything to say about it, we're in for a real treat.

"I believe it's going to be, head and shoulders, the best Rage record," says Morello. "We wrote this record getting along better than we have in a long time, and that situation allows the best material to come to the surface. I've never heard bass playing like Tim [Commerford] plays on this record and Brad's [Wilk] drumming is awesome.

Zack [de la Rocha] is still working on the vocals but so far what I've heard is phenomenal." Late spring is the latest word from Epic Records on the release date of Rage's album -- their third overall and first since 1996's Evil Empire. If you just can't wait till then, the band will be debuting a few new tunes at the benefit for jailed activist Mumia Abu-Jamal on Jan. 28 in New Jersey (allstar, Jan. 7).

It won't be the first time they have road-tested new stuff under politically motivated circumstances. "In the past, that seems to be the way that we first aired our new material, whether it's a benefit for the Zapatistas, or Leonard Peltier, or Mumia, it's how we work out our new material -- under fire," says Morello.

When asked if he felt any pressure to save the world -- or at the very least, rock and roll -- with this record, Morello steeps himself in coolness.

"Not particularly," he says. "I love to make music with this band and would like to make it as often as possible. I guess with some bands there is a doubt about whether their musical chemistry has held up, but I have complete confidence in everybody in this band -- that once we decide to do a thing, it's gonna work out."

Yeah, but will it rock? "The new stuff is absolutely rocking," promises Morello. "There are some tsunami-size riffs on this outing."

Word: Gary Udle.

A small club show, some new songs, another pseudo-"release date" - 1/25/99

Rage played a surprise gig for 500 people at the small Los Angeles club, "The Troubador" early Sunday morning. The show was announced on the radio Saturday afternoon, and fans scrambled to get wrist bands at the Troubador box office that would get them in for $5. They played some songs from the previous two albums, including "Know Your Enemy", which Tool's Maynard James Keenan assisted with.

They played three new songs (apparently from the forthcoming album.) The setlist labeled them as "Mic Check," "Maria," and "Hendrix."  They are all in the style of their older material and they were awesome songs. "Mic Check" was the first new number to emerge. It began with Zack gripping the mic with both hands and saying, "check, check." The song, a melange of styles, climaxed with the singer rapping, "Who got the power? That's my question." Zack said that "Maria" was written about a friend he met while he was in Chiapas. "Maria" was a turbulent groove number that featured the lyric, "When the sun disappears/Only the real appear." "Hendrix" was another multi-dimensional sonic tirade, culminating with the words, "You with it?".

They played two encores including "No Shelter" (from the Godzilla soundtrack) and more classic songs like Killing in the Name, and People of the Sun.

On top of the "tentative" release date of March 16th, May 18th has also been registered as another "tentative" release date.

More Controversy from Police about Mumia Benefit - 1/21/99
From MTV -

Rage Against The Machine guitarist Tom Morello (an outspoken supporter of Mumia) and Maureen Faulkner (the widow of the police officer Mumia is convicted of killing) both called into New York's K-ROCK on Thursday and clashed over the benefit and the cause behind it.

Faulkner, the widow of Philadelphia police officer Daniel Faulkner, called the New York radio station first to urge fans to boycott the show, set for January 28 at the Continental Airlines Arena in East Rutherford, New Jersey.

"I'm outraged," Faulkner told New York's WXRK, 92.3 K-ROCK of the show, staged by Rage and other Mumia supporters who believe the African-American political activist was not treated fairly during his trial, in which he was found guilty of the 1981 shooting death of the police officer.

"I heard about this about a week and a half ago off the Internet. I have a website (at www.justice4danielfaulkner.com) and someone e-mailed me this, and I read it at 10 o'clock at night and I was awake the entire night," Faulkner continued. "I was just so upset that this band... they've been duped. In a way, I feel sorry for them because they have been mislead by the defense attorney once again, and I would be willing to talk to them. I would be willing to give them the facts, the evidence, the court transcriptions that prove that Mumia received a fair trial and he is guilty of first degree murder, of murdering my husband in cold blood."

Morello then called the station later that same afternoon and, after a neighborhood blackout forced him off the air for some time, claimed that the benefit was all about due process.

"Jamal did not receive a fair trial," Morello told the station. During his conversation with the station Morello claimed that there was gross prosecutorial misconduct and intimidation of witnesses in the case.

"In the United States of America you do not execute a man who did not have a fair trial," Morello claimed. "There's a word for that, and that word is lynching."

After charging prosecutors in Pennsylvania with coercing witnesses into false testimony, Morello decried the whole matter as "a medieval situation."

"The Philadelphia Police Department has a long and glorious history of framing suspects," the guitarist charged. "He is simply innocent of the crime."

Ironically, K-ROCK was originally aligned with the show, but pulled its promotional support after morning jock Howard Stern expressed his outrage over the station's involvement in the benefit.

Faulkner's widow told K-ROCK on Thursday that she has also attempted to contact the show's promoter, Ron Delsner, but said that he has refused to talk to her. She added that she has had to move away from Philadelphia because of harassment from Mumia supporters.

"I, in my own eyes, believe that Mumia sells," she told the radio station about the support he has found for his cause. "His voice sells. His hair sells. Many of the anti-death penalty people have made him their poster boy."

New Jersey governor Christie Todd Whitman and the head of the New Jersey State Police have also denounced the benefit.

The January 28 show is sold out. An announcement was made on K-ROCK that refunds are being made available to ticketholders via Ticketmaster for those who do not wish to support the cause.

From Refuse and Resist!:

In response to the sold out benefit concert for Mumia Abu-Jamal on January 28, the FOP has orchestrated an attack ranging from the New York Post to Howard Stern. What follows is a sample. (Clark Kissinger)

New York Post, January 19, 1999

..."It is bad enough that it has become a cult. But on Jan. 28 there is going to be a concert at Continental Arena in the Meadowlands to benefit Mumia's defense fund, friends and family.

"Rage Against The Machine, The Beastie Boys and Bad Religion will be performing.

"I don't know enough about rock to sit in judgment of their skills.

"Yes, this is a democracy and their constitutional right to freedom of speech should be guaranteed. Danny Faulkner didn't get that.

"I hope those bands, whatever sound they want to be heard, also listened to the testimony of four eyewitnesses who saw Mumia ending the laughter of a young decent man. I hope they heard how he tried to kill another cop. I hope how they heard how ballistics showed it was this bastard's gun that ended a beautiful life. I hope they heard three witnesses say they clearly heard Mumia say: 'I shot the motherfucker . I hope the motherfucker dies.'

"This rock concert stains his memory. It stains the memory of every cop killed in the line of duty. I will fight and fight," said the widow, who has her own Web site."

..."Then there's that benefit concert. Frank Toscano, of New York's Patrolman's Benevolent Association said: "This is something really bad." Said widow Maureen: "I know it won't do any good, but I am going to ask Governor Christie Whitman to at least say something." "The concert must go on. But you don't have to go there." Said Costello: "There should be no demonstrations by cops. That would only give them an excuse. But I hope if there is a 911 call to that concert, all the cops going to the scene would observe the traffic light laws."

For complete article from R&R!, click here.

Also, Matthew Bernick brought an article that appeared on the front page of "The Record" (A New Jersay newspaper) to my attention . It is available online by clicking here.

February 2nd release date...no longer valid. - 1/20/99

Looks like the February 2nd release date that was "semi"-official is not going to happen. The new "rumor" date is around March 16th. Still no completely official word from the record company. Cross fingers.

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