Rage Against the Machine’s reunion and worldwide tour stirs up a lot of emotions within me, especially knowing that they are headlining Coachella this year. I said it before Trump was elected as president, and every single day since then, he is the shadow of our country. He is the collective subconscious some of us do not want to turn towards. President Trump, along with the people that support him, are a reflection of what we have become as a society.
So why am I bringing this up with the reuniting of one of the most political bands of my lifetime, because they’re needed. It’s time, and most of all, it’s warranted. Our country needs a mic check.
I remember the first time I ever wrote about Rage Against the Machine. It was 1999 and I was a sophomore in college writing a paper on the influence of violence in music. I included them in that paper and how their music was not about inciting violence, but rather about the brutality, inequality and the oppression of people of color, particularly black people of color. It was lost on most of my peers but not on my professor.
Few things influence people more than music, and this band has always had a lot to say. I may not be a huge fan of Coachella as it is a cash cow festival feeding off the middle class while being a mere drop in the bucket to the rich and famous and those of high status. However, Rage Against the Machine’s performance does have the potential to be seen globally.
So if the intent is to reunite and broadcast it on a global scale in order to throw the fight, unbridled anger, and ultimately the light back at this country’s shadow and the powers that be then I say “do it!” Do it to help ignite a fire in everyone’s worn out soul, and remind people what they’re really fighting against – the political and religious machines, along with their masses, that were created centuries ago that are still being perpetuated today.
The initial dates and locations of Rage Against the Machine’s performances are not lost on this fan. Intention is everything and this is all being done with a very clear purpose at this time. My only hope was that they would add more dates so that others could witness them live as well, and I am grateful they did just that.
To see them live is sheer energy in motion. It is a hybrid of anger, rage and resentment mixed with high vibrations. It is the shedding of the light on the dark. Their concert is still one of the most cathartic shows I have ever experienced – to leave all that had been buried deep within me lying limp on the ground as I walked out lighter and armed with increased knowledge.
I hope as a country, and on a global scale, we can learn our lessons quickly, so that we can not only see each other clearly but one day all walk together as one, no longer divided.
Update: Due to COVID-19 most tour dates have been rescheduled to 2021.