This album simply blew me away. I've never really bin to big of a RATM fan. At least prior to listening to this album. I actually received it from an uncle of mine along with many other cds when he went of to university. Although I must admit the first few times I listened this album I wasn't quite "blown away". Considering I'm not the rebellious hates the government type of person and just about every song on this album is about hating the government, conspiracies, and rebellious acts. But this album soon grew on me and I was able to appreciate the instrumental genius of this album as well as the vocals.
Some people have said that they don't like RATM because of the fact that singer raps. Personally I love that aspect of their music. I think it's the fact that Zack De La Rocha raps that gives them that unique sound, unlike any other band. Not to say that they instrumentals aren't unique either. The guitar gives their songs that nice alternative rock feel, and Tom Morello's unique solos really get your attention. I'm not sure of this fact, but I heard somewhere that he uses an allan key to pick with to get some of the different sounds, for example the solo in "Killing In The Name Of" which I'll talk bout more later.
Bombtrack (5/5): Got to love the intro to this song, very catchy. As I mention earlier their music is very rebellious. To prove that I'll write out the first verse of this song for you.
"Itís just another bombtrack and suckas be thinkin that they can fade this. But i'm gonna drop it down at a higher level. 'Cause I'm inclined to stoop down, hand out some beat-downs. Cold runna train on punk ho's that think the run the game. But i learned to burn that bridge and delete those who compete at a level that's obsolete. Instead I warm my hands on the flames of the flag. As I recall the downfall and the business that burned us all. See through the views and news that twist reality. Enough. I call their bluff. Manifest destiny. Landlords and power whores on my people they took turns. Dispute the suits I ignite and then watch em burn. The thoughts of a militant, militant mind. Harldine, hardline after hardline.Lanlords and power whores on my people they took turns. Dispute the suits I ignite and then watch em burn."
The instrumentals for this song are actually quite simple. The verse chorus and pre-solo riff are all quite similar. The vocals mostly carry this song, as they are chalked full of passion and rage. Listen to the song and you'll see what Iím talking about.
Killing in the Name (5/5): This song is tied for my favourite on the album. Never before have I heard such aggression, rage and passion poured into vocals than at the end when Zach screams "*** you, I won't do whatcha tell me". The solo for this song is a big attention grabber because it has such an incredibly unique sound. I can honestly say I've never heard another solo like it. It's difficult to describe, but Iíll try for those out there who haven't heard the song. It doesn't really sound like a guitar, it sounds like some sort of digitally created sound that somebody would use to make a movie or something. If I could say it sounded like any instrument I would actually have t go with the harmonica.
Take The Power Back (5/5): Remember when I said "Killing in the Name" was only tied for my favourite on the album? Well this is the song that tied it. First I live the intro a nice powerful yet simple bass riff. This song like any other song RATM has ever made is of course rather rebellious. I think this song actually targets the school boards, than the government. Perhaps, implying that school is somewhat sort of brainwash. The instrumentals in this song are very good, much more complex than most of their songs, except for the drums they're quite simple. I loved the solo, although it didn't really have any unique sound to it. It was just a good fast solo. I would like to share with you one line from this song that I particularly enjoyed. "The students eyes will perceive the lies bouncing off every ***ing wall". That also further explains why I thought this song targeted the school boards.
Settle for Noting (4/5): The intro to this song is not RATM's usual style. If you didn't know what you were listening to you might actually mistake the first few seconds of this song for nirvana. This song talks about the hardships of growing up with out a family. You can tell from the expression in Zack's voice that this is a very sensitive issue in his life. I really like the solo in this song although it doesn't really go well with the rest of the song.
Bullet in the Head (3.5/5): This song didn't thrill me quite as much as the other ones. It was still good, just not quite up to par with the rest. The intro had sort of an old 60's song feel like that one song that's like "Some people call me a bad Apple" somewhat reminiscent to that. The only part of this song that was really good was the solo. Like the solo from "Killing in the Name" it was very unique it almost sound likes the solo from "KITN" but not really. The rest of this song was similar to rest of their songs, a little more slow paced, and might almost have been boring if it weren't for Tom Morello adding random little high-pitched notes under the verse to keep peoples attention.
Know Your Enemy (5/5): This song is brilliant. It has a great intro and it's one of few RATM songs that you can really head bang to. The instrumentals are very upbeat and quick, as are the vocals. I love the solo in this song like so many of their other solos it has its own unique sound. In this case it almost sounds like its being played on a keyboard. And there's so much emotion in Zach's voice at the end when he screams "All of which are American dreams".
Wake Up (4/5): I love the intro to this song. It has a very toolesque feel to it. Which I though was great, being a huge tool fan. I like how Tom had consistent use of his wah pedal throughout the song even using it all through the verse. The solo was excellent and the use of the talk pedal gave it a really cool sound. I think this song mostly talks about how people need to wake up and realize that the world around them isn't perfect and there are conspiracies and cover-ups happening all the time.
Fistful of Steel (4/5): This song like the one before it has a beginning that sounded very Toolesque. Pretty reminiscent to "Prison sex" actually. I really enjoy the chorus. It's got that really choppy distorted feel that makes you want to head bang along with it. The only thing that kept this song from getting a 5/5 was the annoying high pitched bend uttered like every 2 seconds during the verse. The solo in this song is kind of similar to the one in the song before it. But still somehow how maintains its own unique sound. Easily distinguishable from any of their other solos.
Township Rebellion (4/5): This song is incredibly unique even for a RATM song. It is very different from the rest of their work. Except for the chorus it's somewhat similar to their other songs but the verse is so different it almost sounds like something by "The Arcade Fire". Again I was very impressed with the solo.
Freedom (4/5): This song was a worthy edition to the album. You could tell there was a lot of pent up rage in Zack at the end when he screams ďFreedom, yeah right". The solo in this song was slower and had a sadder feel to it which was a nice edition because most of the other solos were just fast with weird sounds. Not that theirs anything wrong with that
Well there you have it my review on Rage Against The Machine-Rage Against The Machine. Please don't be too harsh with your comments, this is my first full length review. So, it's probably not very good. And Iím also quite aware that I overused the word "unique"