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One of the most popular hard-rock groups of all time is Rage Against the Machine, who rose to fame in the 1990s. Known for their unique mix of rock music and rap metal, along with their political activism, many newer bands attribute their style to this famous band.
If you’re newer to the music scene, you might wonder – who is Rage Against the Machine?
If you’re interested in learning more about Rage Against the Machine, you’re in the right place. Read on to learn more about who the band is, when they were born, and other beneficial information.
Who is Rage Against the Machine?
Rage Against the Machine is a rock band that formed in Los Angeles in the 1990s. The group includes frontman and vocalist Zack de la Rocha, bassist Tim Commerford, Brad Wilk on drums, and guitarist Tom Morello. The group paved the way for nu-metal, a unique style of music known for its mixture of rock music with a variety of stylistic elements sourced from other genres.
They became widely known for their incendiary words, extreme political activism, and incredible, unmatchable style in the music world.
Rage Against the Machine Members
Rage Against the Machine’s albums were created by four spectacular artists.
- Tom Morello (guitarist, singer, songwriter)
- Zack de la Rocha (musician, singer, songwriter, rapper)
- Tim Commerford (bassist)
- Brad Wilk (drummer)
Rage Against the Machine Member’s Birthdays
- Tom Morello’s birthdate is May 30th, 1964, which makes Tom Morello’s zodiac sign Gemini.
- Zack de la Rocha’s birthday is January 12th, 1970, which makes him an Aquarius.
- Tim Commerford was born on February 26, 1968, which makes him a Pisces.
- Brad Wilk’s birthday is September 5th, 1968, which makes him a Virgo.
Rage Against the Machine Lead Singer
The lead singer of Rage Against the Machine is Zacharias Manuel de la Rocha, which is the longer version of the name Zack de la Rocha. He is known for his powerful singing voice and outstanding lyric writing, which contributed to the band’s fame.
Rage Against the Machine Albums
So far, Rage Against the Machine has four studio albums, two live releases, a compilation album, and a collection of demos.
Rage Against the Machine is known for their evocative songs, which address political problems and encourage activism against current injustices in the world (namely by government entities). Their first album is titled the same as their band for this reason.
Below is a list of all their albums, with the year they released:
- Rage Against the Machine (1992)
- Evil Empire (1996)
- The Battle of Los Angeles (1999)
- Renegades (2000)
- Live at the Grand Olympic Auditorium (2003)
- The Battle of Mexico City (Live) (2020)
- Paintings of the Rebellion (2021)
- Live & Rare (2022)
Rage Against the Machine Guitarist
The main guitarist for Rage Against the Machine is Tom Morello. Tom attended Harvard after graduating from high school, earning a Social Studies degree. However, he made some surprising choices after finishing his education. Instead of using his degree, he moved to Los Angeles and became a part of Rage Against the Machine.
Rage Against the Machine Woodstock 99
One of Rage Against the Machine’s biggest controversies is their performance at Woodstock 99. The band burned a flag onstage, attempting to promote their anti-establishment concepts. Naturally, most did not like their choice of tactic.
At the Woodstock event, the crowds for Rage Against the Machine were even more chaotic than some of the other performers. While their fans enjoyed the performance, many criticized the band’s actions onstage.
What Genre is Rage Against the Machine?
Rage Against the Machine is technically a rock band, but they also have elements of pop, punk, hip-hop, metal, funk, grunge, thrash metal, and rap in their music.
The group pushed the way forward for the nu-metal genre or new-wave metal music, which brought about chaos in a good way. Many fans mistakenly refer to them as a metal band or heavy metal band, but even with their powerful metal-like riffs and screaming sections, they are still classified as a rock band.
Rage Against the Machine paved the way for other alternative rock bands like Linkin Park, Foo Fighters, System of a Down, Slipknot, and even rap rocker Limp Bizkit, who would rise to fame in the mid-90s and early 00s.
Where is Rage Against the Machine From?
Rage the Machine was originally formed in Los Angeles.
Where Do Rage Against the Machine Live?
It is currently believed that most of the band members live in Los Angeles, where the band originally came together. There is, however, little information on the band member’s current residences.
Rage Against the Machine’s Ethnicities
De la Rocha comes from a German and Irish background. Tom comes from Irish and Italian parents. Irish, German, English, and Scottish appear in Tim Commerford’s history. Finally, Brad Wilk is both German and Jewish.
How Tall is Rage Against the Machine?
The heights of the Rage Against the Machine members are as follows:
- Tim Commerford’s height is around 6’4”
- Zack de la Rocha’s height is 5’11”
- Brad Wilk’s height is 5’11”
- Tom Morello’s height is also 5’11”
Clearly, Tim Commerford stands out when the band is standing together.
How much does Rage Against the Machine weigh?
The weight of the members of Rage Against the Machine are as follows:
- Tim Commerford’s weight is around 165 pounds
- Zack de la Rocha’s weight is also about 165 pounds
- Brad Wilk weighs 160 pounds
- Tom Morello weighs approximately 168 pounds.
How did Rage Against the Machine become famous?
Rage Against the Machine skyrocketed to fame after a performance at the Lollapalooza Festival in 1993. By 1994, the band had sold more than three million albums to listeners and had released a Billboard hit song, “Guerilla Radio,” which stayed on the charts for an impressive 20 weeks.
They unfortunately experienced several “ego explosions” as a result – putting significant strain on all four members as they toured, which would eventually lead to their initial breakup.
Despite their internal issues, the band’s fame only grew. Especially as their activism and their wildly outspoken views made it to public platforms.
Why is Rage Against the Machine Controversial?
Rage Against the Machine’s songs, and the band themselves, are controversial because their lyrics are extremely political in nature.
They tend to create very opinionated, left-minded rants against items like government oppression, cultural imperialism, and more, all in a very aggressive and loud manner. People don’t like that.
Is Rage Against the Machine Still Together?
Rage Against the Machine began their career in 1992, but the band’s legacy was cut short in 2000 after creative differences led Zack de la Rocha to leave the band.
While they continued to do shows sporadically over the years, Rage Against the Machines’ tours were not as plentiful like they were in the late ’90s.
However, Rage Against the Machine did announce a reunion tour in 2022, only for it to be cut short thanks to a foot injury incurred by Zack de la Rocha.
Why did Rage Against the Machine get banned from SNL?
In 1996, Rage Against the Machine was invited to perform as the main act on the iconic show Saturday Night Live. They decided to protest the guest host, Steve Forbes, during their performance, hanging upside-down American flags on the amps. Stagehands removed the flags, and Rage Against the Machine was banned from performing on air again.
Rage Against the Machine came together as a band in 1991 after guitarist Tom Morello’s former band split. They made their first album, which included the song “Killing in the Name,” and began trying to sell it to record labels.
At first, sales were slow, but in 1993, they were invited to perform at Lollapalooza, which officially kick-started their rise to fame. They went on to record the songs “Bulls on Parade” and “Guerrilla Radio,” which both topped the charts.
It wasn’t until 1994 that Rage Against the Machine truly hit it big as a result of an MTV performance. Although the band also experienced a temporary breakup that year, they were able to come back together in 1995 for the recording of their album Evil Empire.
Evil Empire was released in 1996 and rose to triple platinum status, selling over 100,000 copies in the first week. Shortly after, the band was invited to perform on Saturday Night Live, only to have disastrous consequences.
Brushing aside their ban from SNL, Rage Against the Machine toured with U2 and the Wu-Tang Clan in 1997. In 1999, they were invited to perform at Woodstock ’99.
Unfortunately, the turn of the century wasn’t a good time for the band, as they split on October 18, 2000. The split was mainly a result of de la Rocha feeling that the band could no longer get along, as he reported they were arguing about everything.
In 2007, Rage Against the Machine shocked the world when they announced they were getting back together to perform at Coachella. This performance kicked off a worldwide tour that included performances through 2008 and several performances in 2009.
Sadly, the rekindled band was fated to have problems, and in 2011, while they weren’t officially broken up, many of the band members split to work on personal projects. This led to delays in music recording and the rerelease of their first album.
The band would remain on a sort of hiatus until 2019 when the band announced they would reunite in 2020. Of course, many of the performances were postponed until 2022 due to COVID.
2022 rolled around…only for the Rage Against the Machine tour to be canceled due to de la Roche sustaining a leg injury. As of 2023, there is no information if any of these shows will ever be rescheduled.
Throughout their storied career, Rage Against the Machine has won many awards, including Grammy Awards for the Best Metal Band Performance. They were also inducted into the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame in 2023
Overall, Rage Against the Machine had quite a dramatic career, from their controversial appearance on Saturday Night Live to their recent reunion tour. Although some might not love their political songs and activism, there is no denying that they earned their fame.
Although they don’t seem to be releasing a new album anytime soon, Rage Against the Machine will always be revered as a major turning point in metal music and rock music history.