Rage Against the Machine

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Matthew Bellamy and Dominic Howard with Rage Against the Machine

Rage Against the Machine are a rapcore band that formed in the 1990s. It combines metal instrumentation and rap vocals.

Muse's members along with Thomas Kirk[source?] heard Rage Against the Machine live at the Carling Weekend, Reading in 1996.[1] This lead to their aspiration to one day headline the festival.[1][2] Matthew Bellamy admires Rage Against the Machine's members for their "purity" and belief in what they do.[3]

The band's hearing of Rage Against the Machine's albums lead them in part to contact and recruit Rich Costey.[4] Costey claimed that this was because Muse wanted a "big and assertive" sound on their recordings.[4]

During the first half of 2000, Bellamy attended "about eight" of their concerts. After Rage Against the Machine's reunion that followed a hiatus, Muse performed on the same stage at Vegoose in October 2007. Muse had previously planned to have finished touring by that time,[5] but after Matthew Bellamy heard that Rage Against the Machine were performing at that time, he decided to take advantage of the fact by extending Muse's tour.[5] According to one Muselive member who attended this concert, the band's guitarist Tom Morello watched Muse's performance from the side of the stage and said he thought it was "good".[6]

Several Muse songs bear similarities with Rage Against the Machine songs. For example, the bass part of Nishe sounds similar to the rhythm part of Bullet in the Head, the Fury riff is similar to the bass part of Without a Face and the Hyper Music riff sounds like Snakecharmer and Testify. Matthew Bellamy frequently plays Rage Against the Machine riffs at concerts, such as Township Rebellion and Rage Against the Machine's rendition of Maggie's Farm.

Bellamy's favourite Rage Against the Machine album is The Battle of Los Angeles.[source?] Rage Against the Machine's self-titled album is one of Christopher Wolstenholme's five favourite albums, or was in December 2006.[7]

During the 2009 X Factor series, a Facebook group was created, campaigning to get Rage's song "Killing in the Name" to be Christmas No. 1 instead the usual X Factor winner's single release of the year. During the campaign, the Muse website had the slogan "WE SUPPORT RAGEFACTOR" on it's main page with a link to download "Killing in the Name" from iTunes below. The campaign was successful and "Killing in the Name" was the 2009 Christmas No .1.

On the 18th of April, it was announced Muse would play a show with Rage Against the Machine and Rise Against in Los Angeles on the 30th of July.

Rage Against the Machine riffs that Muse have played


  1. a b (2006-11-17). [Interview with Christopher Wolstenholme]. BBC Radio Nottingham. Retrieved 2006-11-22. [verify]
  2. Paul Brannigan. (2006-08-23). Supermassive and heading our way. Kerrang. Retrieved 2008-01-14. [verify]
  3. Heroes and villains (2000-07-29). NME. Retrieved 2007-02-24. [verify]
  4. a b Richard Buskin. (2003-12). Rich Costey: Recording Muse's Absolution. Sound on Sound website. Retrieved 2006-11-04 from www.soundonsound.com. [verify]
  5. a b Lindsay McDougall. (2007-08-02). [Interview with Matthew Bellamy]. The Breakfast Show. Retrieved 2007-08-02 from abc.net.au. [verify]
  6. mazda. (2007-11-07). [Muselive forum post]. Muselive. Retrieved 2008-01-08 from www.muselive.com.
  7. Musician of the Month (2006-11). Alternative Press. Retrieved 2008-01-16. [verify]

See also

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