Embarking on one of the final shows of the summer, we knew this was going to be a great one. Prophets Of Rage is a band formed to spit all over the machine, and call out the system for what it is. Plus AWOLNATION is a superb opener, and a one man band well deserving of high success.
After arriving and having the prospect of using a blanket declined, seating was reached, and that seating was either standing up on wet, dirty grass, some areas even muddy, or sitting on that grass. Okay, fine. Not a big deal, at all. The music is what’s important.
Aaron Bruno, the mastermind of AWOLNATION, took the stage for all DTE concertgoers, and that lingering feeling of ‘this isn’t up to par’ began to sink in pretty quick. Something with his singing/screaming and the mic, weren’t working well together, and that’s rare. For the 5th time of seeing AWOLNATION, this finished as the worst outing yet experienced (the best being The Fillmore Detroit, July 2015. Insanely good show). That mic problem hurt the performance a lot, though the other big issue was that the songs just sounded okay, and that he didn’t seem to care. Definitely more apathetic in his overall live set presentation with all these factors. The reality of this set, was the audience’s disinterest conglomerated in the night atmosphere from its poor quality. Which is really too bad, as AWOLNATION is an excellent band. Run is a superb album. As is Megalithic Symphony. Plus Bruno knows how to perform a great live set. Tonight was simply a rare miserable failure.
41 / 100
Fists up! It’s time to Make America Rage Again. A proper motto for the band in tribute to the greatest bands ever to dish out lyrical rage on politics. Time to disrupt. Prophets Of Rage did a decent job of being true to that, though not as emphatically as the legendary Zack De La Rocha, the dearly missed Rage lead vocalist, while still not seeming like copycats of him, though still packing plenty of fury, as evidenced by their desire to play the Republican National Convention AND for attempting to play a prison, having that declined, and setting up right outside the property by mere inches and performing a concert full blast for the inmates anyway. For audiences whom do not know what to expect, Prophets Of Rage cover a mix of Rage Against The Machine classics, as well as play covers of a couple Public Enemy and Cypress Hill songs (since those are the acts the 2 vocalists, Chuck D and B-Real each front). They played a medley of those only. The rest of the songs were Rage Against The Machine and a couple newly recorded tracks that are Prophets of Rages songs.
Mixed Feelings here. On the one hand, with the entire band in this side project, minus the vocalist, they constantly ace the instrumentation and it sounds loud and badass. On the other hand, considering Zack IS the Rage (against the machine), of the band, Chuck D and B-Real sound like wusses in comparison. Plus, what if this side project is ruining Rage Against The Machines legacy? One had to wonder when the DJ just randomly played “Jump Around” by House Of Pain, a song that NONE of them created, and the 2 lead rappers were just hopping around to it. Seriously? Not Necessary, given the 3 catalogs you have to work with. Not attempting to copy Zack and doing their own thing was wise, and to their credit they did ace a few songs on vocals, and performed their songs well. B-Real also did some good crowd work. Highlights included the performances of ‘Killing In The Name Of’, ‘Prophets Of Rage’ and ‘Sleep Now In The Fire’. During ‘Sleep Now In The Life’, Morello blasted the blistering riff at top volume, and woke the crowd up fast and got an appreciated well deserved response from them. It was also announced that a percentage of the money from this all was going to a cause to feed the hungry. Way to go guys.
Ultimately, Prophets Of Rage doesn’t deliver as much as one would like them to. Yet, they still play Rage songs with some bite, have highlight moments and bring out other famous musicians during some shows. It’s well worth investing your money on a ticket to see this band.
71 / 100.