Rage Against The Machine - XX 20th Anniversary
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Not since the days of the Clash and the MC5 has rock seen such political force as in the uncompromising debut from this L.A. quartet. Expanding the hip-hop/metal style of bands such as the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Rage tap the spirits of vintage Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin, coupled with hardcore punk intensity and Public Enemy-style grooves. "Bombtrack" opens the LP with a shot of adrenaline and singer Zack de la Rocha's infuriated chorus of "Burn, burn, yes, you're gonna burn!" The intensity doesn't let up an inch on the militant "Killing in the Name" (with the inspiring chant, "Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me!"), the ultrafunky "Bullet in the Head," and the engrossing "Fistful of Steel." Tom Morello combines time-honored metal guitar riffs with sounds that suggest a hip-hop scratcher over a rhythm section that simply takes no prisoners. Intelligent and aggressive, this is unimpeachably one of the best hard-rock records ever made.