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Rage Against The Machine has not played live since headlining its own L.A. Rising festival show in Los Angeles in the summer of 2011, and guitarist Tom Morello hinted to Rolling Stone that that gig could well have been Rage's last. Asked if he had any idea what direction Rage may take in the future, Morello said, "There's no plans, no current direction of anything, so I guess the answer is no. It was my great hope that we'd celebrate the 20th anniversary with a five-continent world tour."
Rage did reissue its 1992 self-titled debut last month in a deluxe box set that includes the remastered album, original demos, tons of live footage on DVD including their first performance in October 1991 and a more recent London show in 2010. But as for the future, Morello said, "Whether or not we ever play music again in any capacity is unknown. I'm grateful for the music we played together."
Morello told us that Rage's fiery style of rap-rock could only have been done by this set of musicians: "It's a product of the very unique personalities and chemistry of the four guys in the band. None of us could have made songs that sound like this without the other three. It was an absolutely unheard-of combination, both musically, ethnically and, in Zack's lyrics, the point of view expressed in his lyrics was one that had never been heard on the radio before."
Rage only made three studio albums of original material in its entire lifespan, with Morello saying, "If it were up to me, I would've made two records a year. As it is, we have just three records of original material over 20 years. It's a testament to the strength of that material and to the mythos of the Rage live shows that there is an interest 20 years later in people looking at it."
As for why it seems so difficult for Rage to tour -- even since reforming in 2007, it has only played sporadic gigs and not a full trek -- Morello said, "We'd have to agree to go on one. Once a year, the band meets and very seriously discusses and turns down awesome offers to tour the world."
Morello was also asked about what his relationship is like now with singer Zack de la Rocha, to which he replied, "Oh, I mean, we communicate fairly regularly, and my relationship with those three guys is what it's been for some time. I love them. I consider them brothers and brothers-in-arms."