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Tom Morello: Rage Against the Machine on Hold for Now

Kevin Winter, Getty Images

Rage Against the Machine guitarist Tom Morello is keeping busy these days playing gigs as his alter ego, the Nightwatchman, and getting ready for the Justice Tour. The three-date trek will benefit the Nation Institute, which supports independent media, and features Morello, Rise Against frontman Tim McIlrath and MC5’s Wayne Kramer.

But, what about Rage?

While Rage Against the Machine reunited to celebrate their 20th anniversary at L.A. Rising last month, according to Morello, the rap-rock act is on hold for the moment.

“I completely understand [that] people want to hear that we’re in the studio making a record — we are not, I’m sorry,” he told Flint, Mich., active rock radio station Banana 101.5. “Everybody in the band gets along great. We just played the L.A. Rising festival this year, [and] that was super fun and a great way to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the first time we were in a room. But I promise you, if there is going to be Rage music or a Rage tour — we’ll let you know. It’s not gonna be kept secret. It will be announced. Right now, there is nothing so there’s nothing to announce.”

He added that Rage isn’t “a band that operates according to album cycles or anything like that. We did that back in the nineties and it made everybody crazy and we didn’t get along because of it. Now when we want to do something — we do it. When we want to do a tour or play a show or write a song — we’ll do it … and we’ll let you know [laughs].”

Morello’s drops a new Nightwatchman album, ‘World Wide Rebel Songs,’ tomorrow (Aug. 30). It’s his fourth album as the Nightwatchman, which equals the same number of albums he recorded with Rage.

“This is not some sort of vanity project or side project, it’s something that I’ve really put my heart and soul into and ‘World Wide Rebel Songs’ is pretty distinctly different than all the previous Nightwatchman records in that I have a full back up band on this one called the Freedom Fighter Orchestra,” said Morello. “It’s the first Nightwatchman record where I’ve really made extensive use of electric guitar. It’s riffs and it’s solos mixed in with the darker Nightwatchman material.”

Tom Morello’s 2011 Justice Tour Dates:

9/5 — Madison, Wis.
9/6 — Cleveland, Ohio
9/7 — Flint, Mich.

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