Rage Against the Machine is an American rock band from Los Angeles, California. Formed in 1991, the group's line-up consists of vocalist Zack de la Rocha, bassist and backing vocalist Tim Commerford, guitarist Tom Morello and drummer Brad Wilk. Critics have noted Rage Against the Machine for its "fiercely polemical music, which brewed sloganeering leftist rants against corporate America, cultural imperialism, social inequality, and government oppression into a Molotov cocktail of punk, hip-hop, and thrash." Rage Against the Machine drew inspiration from early heavy metal instrumentation, as well as rap acts such as Afrika Bambaataa,Public Enemy, the Beastie Boys and Urban Dance Squad. As of 2010, they have sold over 16 million records worldwide.
In 1992, the band released its self-titled debut album, which became a commercial success, leading to a slot in the 1993 Lollapalooza. The band did not release a follow-up record until 1996, with Evil Empire. The band's third album The Battle of Los Angeles was released in 1999. During their initial nine-year run, they became one of the most popular and influential bands in music history. They were also ranked #33 on VH1's 100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock. The band had a large influence on the nu metal genre which emerged during the mid to late 1990's.
Shortly after breaking up in 2000, the band released the cover album Renegades. De la Rocha started a low-key solo career in One Day as a Lion; the rest of the band formed the rock supergroup Audioslave with Chris Cornell, then-former frontman of Soundgarden, which disbanded in 2007, and in April of that year, Rage Against the Machine performed together for the first time in seven years at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival. The band has continued to perform at many live venues and festivals around the world since 2007.