What a polarizing show. On the one hand, Prophets of Rage is a clear and obvious cash-grab. Their "edgy" message can be summed up as "Donald Trump is bad. So we're doing this." and the openers were absolutely terrible. We'll get to those, because despite these major shortcomings, it has been a LONG time since I've had this much fun at a show. Why? Simple. Because Rage Against the Machine is THAT good. Even though B-Real left much to be desired and Chuck D was just average, the instrumentation of Rage's Tom Morello, Brad Wilk, and Tim Commerford more than made up for it. Basically, this is Rage Against the Machine's show, and fortunately for all of us all the members of Prophets of Rage knew it.
The night started out slow. Opener and total unknown Wakrat was hugely disappointing, and couldn't find the "edge" they were trying to deliver and instead were just downright offensive at points, with one of their big songs being a clear and obvious anthem for school shooters. After the lackluster opener, we saw the remains of the once-superstar band AWOLNATION. (Author's note: I am currently providing the merch for AWOLNATION) All the stories about Aaron Bruno are true. Sadly, there is little talent nowadays with Bruno and his band, as it can basically be summed us as "Aaron Bruno screams uncontrollably for 45 minutes" with the sole bright spot of the set being the obvious, "Sail." At least during "Sail" Bruno allowed the rest of his band to come out a bit versus trying to drown them out with his terrible vocals like he did during the rest of the set.
But I knew all I had to do was bide my time, and fortunately I was not disappointed. After opening with the lackluster and predictable "Prophets of Rage," the crew tore into a cover of "Guerrilla Radio" and never looked back. The explosive 18 song set was capped by a surprise appearance by Nashville locals Dan Auerbach (of The Black Keys) and Matt Shultz (of Cage the Elephant) during the encore to play a cover of Rage's Kick Out the Jams and featured a host of Rage covers, as well as a few Cyprus Hill and Public Enemy covers. Prophets of Rage even played a few covers of other bands, including Beastie Boys popular "No Sleep Till Brooklyn." This was also the problem, however. Despite a fantastic set, the entire show felt incredibly superficial. Like I said before, the banter was simple, and even Tom Morello failed to incite any sort of rebellious mood. The only time the group was edgy was when it performed its famously edgy songs. Yes, "Killing in the Name Of" is still one of the most controversial songs of all-time, but its authors have clearly sold out to the establishment. Fortunately, the instrumentation of Rage Against the Machine was so good that I didn't care.
1) Prophets of Rage
2) Guerrilla Radio (RATM Cover)
3) Bombtrack (RATM Cover)
4) People of the Sun (RATM Cover)
5) How I Could Just Kill a Man (Cypress Hill Cover)
6) Take the Power Back (RATM Cover)
7) Testify (RATM Cover)
8) DJ Lord Break
9) Sleep Now in the Fire (RATM Cover)
10) Calm Like a Bomb (RATM Cover)
11) Bullet in the Head (RATM Cover)
12) Shut 'Em Down (Public Enemy Cover)
13) Know Your Enemy (RATM Cover)
14) The Party's Over
15) No Sleep Till Brooklyn/Fight the Power (Beastie Boys/Public Enemy Mashup)
16) Kick Out the Jams (RATM Cover) (with Dan Auerbach and Matthew Shultz)
17) Killing in the Name (RATM Cover)
Who are we?
Derek Jung and Joseph Kathmann -- Just two ordinary (debatable) guys that love talking about music. You can read more about us here: