“Make the world rage again!” – Prophets Of Rage are the perfect mix between Rage Against The Machine (Brad Wilk, Tim Commerford & Tom Morello) and hip hop legends from Public Enemy and Cypress Hill Chuck D, B-Real and DJLord. With their first album, they’re trying to make people think again about our world and to make them jump with very powerful songs. We had the honour to talk during 10 little minutes with Tim Commerford, Rage Against The Machine and Prophets Of Rage’s bassist.
You guys played your first shows in France with Prophets Of Rage at Download Festival France and Hellfest. What did you thought about these shows?
Tim Commerford (bass): Oh, those were the best shows we played with Prophets Of Rage since the beginning of the band. I’ve never seen an audience like these ones in my entire life, it was amazing.
We were surprised to see how good the show was.
Tim: It was an amazing time for the band and for the audience I guess. For all the fans, fans of Rage Against The Machine or of Prophets Of Rage, you gotta make sure you play the songs right but it’s only 50% of what makes the show. It’s the only thing I can control, the others 50% are in the audience’s hands. I’m a member of Rage Against The Machine from the very beginning and I saw crowds doing incredible things like thousands of people do the moshpit. And this tour, especially French shows were the best examples of that. I saw so many different reactions about songs from Rage or Prophets and it’s a beautiful thing.
Do you think you guys lead to those reactions because people wants to hear Rage Against The Machine or because people wants to rage again?
Tim: I think that they are some people who loves a song like “Killing In The Name” for example. Every time we play this song, the crowd goes nuts and many of them came to the show for this song especially. But I really think that they many guys in the audience who just want to rage again. The music excites them and make them feel that way. Since I am in Rage Against The Machine, I met so many different people. People that are telling that our music, that Zach’s lyrics are helping them to realize what their life is. And I also have SO MANY people who comes to me and says “I love to work out on your music!” Man, I hear this a lot! So I guess it’s because it’s a very powerful music.
How can you explain the complicity between Brad, Tom and you?
Tim: We play together for a very long time now so, I think it’s a part of it to be honest, there was an alchemy between us from the beginning. Brad uses to play behind the beat, Tom on top of the beat and I play right on the beat. So, we cover all the space! This is what makes our sound because, we’re not using a wall of guitars. As a bass player, I always thought about how fill up more area. So, with Brad and Tom we just having this feeling. And with Zach too. And we learned to have it with Chris Cornell or any other musician that we played through the years! With Prophets we are playing Rage’s songs but we are better musicians so we are playing these songs better than ever.
You have a link with France with your other band, Wakrat. You were supposed to play on Download Festival and Hellfest but finally it didn’t happen. Why?
Tim: Yeah it’s too bad. We are a punk rock band and sometimes things are not going as well as you want it so, things going the wrong way. I really loved to be involved in Wakrat and I hope we can do other things in the future.
How can you explain the fact that, through many projects, you’re still playing with Brad and Tom?
Tim: It’s simple man. When you’re in band, even if you’re not the best musician in the world, if you are with guys that are as excited as you are about playing this type of music, it’s the best feeling in the world. And it’s happening every day with Tom and Brad, that’s why we’re always together.
Do you think that Prophets Of Rage could have kind of the same impact as Rage had back in time?
Tim: We’re not living in the same world we were living back in the days, so it’s going to have exactly the same impact. But we’re doing the same thing as we were doing with Rage Against The Machine: we’re just playing music! We’re not sitting and talking about which song is going to be, we just play music and see what’s coming in! And the beautiful thing in Prophets Of Rage is that this is 35 years of music inside this band!
Do you think that one day you’ll be able to play music for a band that are only talking about girls and parties?
Tim: No! I will never be able to do that because those are things that I never really thought during my life. I’m married, I have children, I love my children, I love my wife and I love my instrument! (laughs) I put all of my time in my instrument!
To finish, what’s coming in your mind if we say “Anger is a gift”?
Tim: Anger is definitely a gift man. The first things that pops in my mind is my dad telling me that I shouldn’t be playing bass guitar because you don’t make money with playing bass guitar. And that droves me mad man! And I still have this anger with me. I grew up with Zach De La Rocha, we met when I was 8. So I know what kind of world we grew up in and I know how to live with others. I grew up learning other lifestyles. We lived in a white world, a world where people didn’t like guys like Zach or other people I knew. So, we grew up with that anger and turned it up in a legacy. Anger is a beautiful gift if you let it be.