What The Hell Happened To....RATM?

Posted by Brandon |

Welcome to Down With Pants! first "What The Hell Happened to..." week. Each day this week I'll be asking the question "what the hell happened to..." about a certain topic and I will do my very best to find out or at least blather on a while...

What the hell happened to Rage Against The Machine? Actually, it's a question that I lamented back in November, a lament that apparently didn't fall on deaf ears.

Thankfully and excitingly enough, Zach de la Rocha and Tom Morrello have patched up their relationship enough to reunite Rage Against The Machine and headline The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, April 27-29. Which day Rage is going to play was not announced.

I've never been to Coachella: the desert heat, ridiculously priced tickets and general malaise have kept me far away. But a Rage reunion is nearly enough to motivate me to go this year even though the other headliners include Red Hot Chili Peppers (yawn) and Bjork (huh?). Other bands scheduled to play include Sonic Youth, The Roots, Willie Nelson, The Decemberists and Crowded House (another exciting reunion).

Rage Against The Machine's energy and message is exactly what has been missing from mainstream radio for the nearly seven years that they have been broken up. Even though meat heads and frat boys throughout the land "Raged" whenever they got the chance despite the fact that they were "The Machine", the politics were at least put on the table for everyone to consider. No other band right now, or since, has had such a radical viewpoint reach so many people.

One of the most amazing things about this war is that there has been no strong, truly dissenting voice coming from the arts and music communities. Sure, there have been a lot of calculated songs and announcements, but typically they have reeked of glossy public relations campaigns rather than true dissent or they have come from the fading hippie set that nobody will listen to anymore.

Whether or not this one concert will bring these guys back together to make some serious lefty music again is yet to be seen, but you can't deny the importance of Zach and Tom putting aside their differences to play at least one show together. Hopefully, that energy, combined with everything that is currently going down, will fire these two up again and get them creating that hardcore, politically charged music that they were once known for.

Like I said before, If there was ever a time for Rage Against The Machine, it's now.

UPDATE: The full lineup was released on Monday and Rage is playing on Sunday the 29th. Music snobs everywhere are wetting themselves over this lineup (but are pissed about the RHCP and Rage as headliners) and they should be wetting themselves, it is pretty incredible.


kapgar said...

Does this mean Audioslave is dead??


narnarnarnar said...

According to:


they're playing Sunday.

*AND* JAMC are getting back together for a show. I would sell an organ to see that.

narnarnarnar said...

Well gee that cut off link isn't helpful at all is it...


Mark Rogers said...

Holy shit dude. RAGE!!!1

That was the only band I cared about when I was 13. I was JUST lamenting the absence of RAGE the other night, too. Now I have something to celebrate.