During a recent conversation with Guitar World, Rage Against the Machine’s founding member and guitarist, Tom Morello, talked about the challenges that the band faced while recording their self–titled debut album.
Rage Against the Machine is currently one of the most famous bands in the rock scene but that was not always the case. Back in 1992, the band decided to release their debut self–titled album through Epic Records. Since their first album, RATM has preserved their politically-themed lyrical content which has always been praised by their fans.
The album was a huge success and several critics applauded the album’s politically motivated agenda while congratulating the band members for their musical talent. ‘Rage Against the Machine’ peaked at Number 1 on the ‘Billboard Heatseekers’ chart in the United States, ranked Number 24 on Rolling Stone’s list of ‘100 Greatest Metal Albums of All Time,’ and it achieved triple-platinum sales certification in the US.
In his recent conversation with Guitar World, Morello talked about the economical problems that they faced as a band before the release of their debut album and said that he had to borrow guitars for big outros. Morello also told the story of how he got his first ‘Taco Bell hot sauce’ red Les Paul guitar with his $600 budget for gear.
Here’s what Morello said in the interview:
“When we were doing the demos for the first Rage Against the Machine record, we had an engineer called Auburn Burrell and I borrowed his Les Paul for the end part of ‘Bullet in the Head,’ the big outro section. When we were going in to make the record, I had my Telecaster and ‘Arm the Homeless’ guitar, and we each had $600 to spend on gear.
I wanted a Les Paul to double my principal guitars. I saw it on the wall of West LA Music in Santa Monica Boulevard and it was exactly the same color as Taco Bell hot sauce. The reason I know that is because Taco Bell was one of the main food staples of the squat I was living in.
I thought to myself, ‘That guitar looks exactly like the taco sauce we eat all the time!’ and that’s why I bought it. It was not a particularly expensive guitar and rarely stayed in tune, but it became the main overdub guitar for all my drop-D songs from that day forward – including ‘Killing in the Name,’ the end of ‘Freedom,’ the end of ‘Take the Power Back’ and I used it just the other day on my newest recordings!”
Click here for the source and you can listen to ‘Killing in the Name’ below.