It was a victory party. An 80,000-people-deep mosh. It was a roiling triumph of the power of the people and their band. Punkmetalrap rips Simon Cowell’s X Factor Xmas (read on…). It was the people and their music: Rage Against The Machine
When the people stay mute, the big dogs win. In this case, Cowell’s X Factor dominance over the UK’s Christmas week music charts was upended by the little guys. In late 2009, DJ Jon Morter and his wife campaigned for Rage Against The Machine’s vicious 1992 single “Killing In The Name” to challenge Cowell’s latest would-be chart-topping artist. The campaign explodes on Facebook. RATM pledges all sales of their song to the homeless and a free concert if the track sits atop the charts on Christmas Day.
It happened and that free concert is now here on DVD. Stirringly. With rhythms akin to a string of IED explosions, guitarist Tom Morello amps up his inner Hendrix and vocalist/proselytizer Zack de la Rocha’s relentlessly militant exhortations bring the victorious tribe to frenzy. (Look, I readily admit this free concert saga is a small victory in the face of all the crap ahead of us, but small victories win the war.)
Free-for-all highlights include: “Bombtrack,” “Bulls On Parade,” “Township Rebellion,” “Killing In The Name,” and the Clash’s primal “White Riot.”