proves to be the last Rage Against the Machine album to feature singer Zack de la Rocha, who quit the band after nine years, it's a cool way to go out. Produced by Rick Rubin, Renegades
is a salute to the artists who made Rage what they are--or were. While it's easy to hear Rage's rap roots in songs from Afrika Bambaataa
, and Volume 10, it's more interesting to see their take on rock in its classic and punk forms. Rage capture the raw spirit, if not the quite the intensity, inherent in the MC5
classic "Kick Out the Jams." A superior second live take appears at the CD's end, followed by a concert version of Cypress Hill's "How I Could Just Kill a Man," with help from B-Real and Sen Dog. Devo's "Beautiful World" is rendered quietly unrecognizable, while Minor Threat's "In My Eyes" is given a wonderfully melodic, ultra-aggro treatment. The Rolling Stones' "Street Fighting Man" takes on a techno vibe that's unsettling and Bob Dylan's "Maggie's Farm" is also effectively modernized. Ultimately, Renegades
is a must-have for its song selection, musical execution, and the unhappy fact that it's likely the ultimate offering from one of rock's most musically and politically relevant lineups. --Katherine Turman
The Japanese version features 2 bonus tracks: Kick Out The Jams (Live Grand Olympic Auditorium), & How Could I Just Kill A Man (Live Grand Olympic Auditorium).