Rage Against The Machine's Tom Morello says an injured Zack de la Rocha is "more compelling" than 99% of frontmen

Rage Against The Machine's Tom Morello and Zack de la Rocha
(Image credit: Astrida Valigorsky/Getty Images)

Tom Morello has shared some praise for his Rage Against The Machine bandmate Zack de la Rocha, stating that he believes him to be a better performer than 99% of other frontmen "in the history of all time", even when injured.

Over the last year, de la Rocha had been performing while sat down at Rage Against The Machine shows due to tearing his anterior cruciate ligament on the second night of the band’s Public Service Announcement reunion tour at Chicago’s United Center in 2022. However, due to complications with the leg injury, the band were forced to cancel all remaining dates after just 18 performances.

While in conversation with Rolling Stone, the Rage guitarist was asked how he felt about the frontman's injury after finding out he was hurt "pretty badly".

“Well, the irony is that I had just recovered from a ruptured achilles,” Morello explains. “I was in rehearsals on crutches. I recognised the gait. But Zack toughed it out that night. And for the next 17 shows, he was more compelling as a frontman sitting on a box in the middle of the stage than 99 per cent of the frontmen in the history of all time.”

He continues, “It was completely unexpected, but the fact that he soldiered on…and he didn’t just soldier on, but he was able to be that electric, compelling, powerful transmitter of truth that he is, while remaining fairly immobile, was fairly impressive. I didn’t hear from one fan that felt the show was diminished in power by one per cent."

Following the leg injury, RATM also cancelled their 2023 North American tour, which was set to kick off last month. 

Liz Scarlett

Liz works on keeping the Louder sites up to date with the latest news from the world of rock and metal. Prior to joining Louder as a full time staff writer, she completed a Diploma with the National Council for the Training of Journalists and received a First Class Honours Degree in Popular Music Journalism. She enjoys writing about anything from neo-glam rock to stoner, doom and progressive metal, and loves celebrating women in music.