The powerhouse band, Prophets of Rage includes Tim Commerford, Tom Morello and Brad Wilk from Rage Against the Machine and Audioslave, plus DJ Lord and Chuck D from Public Enemy and rapper B-Real of Cypress Hill. They just dropped a new video for the song “The Ballot Or The Bullet” which is filled with dramatic effects, urging people of all ages to fight for what they believe and vote. Morello declared to Rolling Stone: “We’re an elite task force of revolutionary musicians determined to confront this mountain of election year bullshit, and confront it head-on with Marshall stacks blazing.”
This song has the most solid performance from passionate musicians, delivering tight vocals and guitar sounds that are so perfectly channeled by this group. The intro starts with Malcolm X delivering a speech. The song has a familiar guitar backdrop which only Rage Against the Machine guitarists can deliver. DJ Lord, Chuck D and B-Real deliver a powerful punch with their lyrics, made with hate is like hate made. I was born woke. I was born to deliver in these hard ass times. The video emerges with flashes of note-worthy pioneers who fought for freedom.
The song then drifts into strong guitar and drum currents before fading out. The video ends with a message which reads: There are people trying to keep many of us from trying to vote. Don’t squander the rights we’ve fought so hard to get. Agitate, organize, resist and rebel before, during and after election day. In the words of Malcolm X, it’s got to be the ballot or the bullet.
The name Prophets of Rage derives from the title of the Public Enemy song “Prophets of Rage” from its 1988 album, It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back. To coincide with the band’s protest performance at the Republican National Convention, it released its debut single, titled “Prophets of Rage”. The band played its first live show on January 20, 2016.
From May 2016 through October 2016, the band embarked on a North American tour, dubbed the “Make America Rage Again Tour.” On July 19, 2016, the band played a show at an undisclosed location during the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio. Morello said the band will make a splash in Cleveland during the convention and had more to say about the planned disturbance. “That’ll be a perfect place for a band like Prophets of Rage to cause a ruckus. And we will be there on the streets, in the fields, and in the conscience.”
An EP, The Party’s Over was released on August 19, 2016. Alongside the songs, “Prophets of Rage” and “The Party’s Over” the EP contains live cover versions of the songs “Killing in the Name” (Rage Against the Machine), “Shut ‘Em Down” (Public Enemy) and “No Sleep ’til Cleveland”, a rework of “No Sleep ’til Brooklyn” by the Beastie Boys. The EP was produced by Brendan O’Brien.
On June 1, 2017, the band released a single with accompanying music video for the track “Unfuck the World” from their album, Prophets of Rage. The band released the singles “Living on the 110” on July 11 and “Radical Eyes” on July 22. The self-titled album, featuring all original material, was released on September 15 by Fantasy Records.
The band was announced as the opening act on Avenged Sevenfold’s 2018 End of the World summer tour in the US. In July 2018, the band released the single “Heart Afire”, their first new music since the debut album. They also released a new music video for “Legalize Me”.
In July 2018, bassist Commerford confirmed that a new album isn’t far off. “As far as I’m concerned, our first album was a great imprint of us as a band. We made a record, and it was an imprint in time, and we did that,” he said. And we’re on to another record now; we’ve already finished a 13-song record that we are just in the process of just putting together at this moment in time. So there’s a lot going on. We have a new song that comes out on July 7th. And it’s on to new territory, new sounds and new music.”