Tag Archives: tom morello

Annoyance In Opposition To The Appliance


In my never-ending quest to obtain an acceptable
audiophile-grade setup for my listening pleasure, I listen to a lot of music.
Like, a lot. But whenever I need to tweak something or get new equipment (who am I
kidding? I’m broke), I always return to the same album: Rage Against The
’s self-titled debut album. This is because the album is considered by many to be
perfectly mastered. This should come as no surprise, since it was mastered by
none other than the OG master-of-mastering Bob Ludwig. I’ve listened to the album so much lately that I decided to do an album throwback on it for all of you beautiful readers. So let’s throw this album
back and relive the glory of the first album to merge rap, metal, and Bernie

If you start up this album expecting beautiful vocal
melodies and sweet lyrics about love and happiness, then you should probably
look somewhere else. The polar opposite of Taylor Swift, vocalist Zack de la
doesn’t sing. Rather, he raps, and he yells. His vocals are angsty and
emotionally charged, like a drunken high school pep rally. His vocals are quite
the juxtaposition to Tom Morello’s guitar playing, which is technical and
perfectly-executed. Utilizing I-don’t-even-know-what, he makes the weirdest and
raddest sounds ever produced by a guitar. The guitar is so unique and
unbelievable that the album booklet comes with a disclaimer: “NO SAMPLERS,

Zack and Tom are the two powerhouses of the group, and the
ones you’ll hear about more often than not. There’s also bassist Tim
, whose intense and growling basslines lead the songs and cause you
to turn the volume up far louder than is healthy. The importance of the bass is
often overlooked, but without it, it would sound like you’re listening through
a gramophone. But let’s not forget Brad Wilk, the drummer of RATM. Although
seldom talked about, this dude can drum like there’s no tomorrow. The heartbeat
of Rage’s music, Brad fills the album with intense and angry drums that match perfectly
with Zack’s angry vocals.

While everybody and their mother has heard the track “Killing
in the Name”, the album is literally full of classics. Every single track is as
good as the others, with none standing out to me as the clear best. This is
rare, and the mark of a truly fantastic album. I do, however, have a new favorite
track from this album every few days, with my current favorite being “Township
Rebellion” for its lyrics reminding me of the current political and social
climate. Or at least, that’s what I tell people when I want to look like a
sophisticated adult and not just a 19 year old who releases his angst
vicariously through Rage Against The Machine’s music.

Whether you’re about to fight somebody in a fit of road rage
or are consuming food and drink in a lecture hall that explicitly forbids it,
this album is the soundtrack to your irresponsible decisions. Give it a listen,
then another, and then maybe four more. Rage Against The Machine is a national
treasure. Hide it from Nicholas Cage.

Niles Kyholm

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