Rage Against The Machine has received a revitalized commercial success as the result of protests throughout the country. The politically-conscious alternative rock band’s albums have re-entered the top music charts as protests over the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police continue.
This is not the first time that RATM’s music has received added airtime as a result of social upheaval. In December 2009, an ultimately successful online campaign to knock American Idol contestant Joe McElderry‘s cover of “The Climb” by Miley Cyrus off the U.K. charts and replace it with “Killing in the Name” received international support from fans and the band, and drew the ire of Idol host Simon Cowell.
Despite debuting in 1992, and eventually peaking at #45 on the Billboard 200 chart two years later, Rage Against The Machine’s self-titled debut has now found itself in the #174 slot of the industry ranking. Of course, the band couldn’t care less given its anti-capitalistic, anarchistic ways. Yet the success goes even further on the iTunes chart, where not one but three RATM albums have re-entered the top 50. The band’s 1992 album, which contains the protest anthem “Killing In The Name” which was written in response to the 1992 L.A. riots, has reached #8, 1996’s Evil Empire at #35, and 1999’s Battle of Los Angeles at #41.
Meanwhile, as the band’s music re-emerges once again in the wake of violence at the hands of the system, some fans have become disillusioned with its music’s now-apparent political overtones. Luckily, many of those fans have decided to air their grievances publicly to guitarist Tom Morello on social media. Even if some of these fans delete their Tweets and comments after getting haymaker clapbacks from Morello, through the magic of the internet they are still available.
Scott!! What music of mine were you a fan of that DIDN’T contain “political BS”? I need to know so I can delete it from the catalog. https://t.co/AMpmjx6540
— Tom Morello (@tmorello) June 9, 2020
Like shooting fish in a barrel: pic.twitter.com/hxvZ6GgoH5
— Tom Morello (@tmorello) June 6, 2020
Rage Against The Machine was set to hit the road on a reunion tour this summer featuring opening support from Run The Jewels. Even though that tour was postponed due to the global pandemic, the band’s music is still well-represented throughout the country and the world at large as the soundtrack to the fight against injustice. Visit the band’s website for tour information.