Tom Morello continues to break the rules on The Atlas Underground Fire

The Atlas Underground Fire finds Rage Against The Machine man Tom Morello and all-star collaborators pushing the ‘pop’ button

Tom Morello: The Atlas Underground Fire cover art
(Image: © Mom + Pop)

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He may be a member of rock’s most dogmatic band, but Rage Against The Machine guitarist Tom Morello isn’t one for rules in his solo career. His all-star The Atlas Underground Fire project finds him hooking up with a full spectrum array of collaborators, from hardcore to modern pop. 

The marquee track on their second album is a leadfooted cover of Highway To Hell featuring Bruce Springsteen and Eddie Vedder, which turns out to be a massive missed open goal. 

Better is the distorted semi-industrial blast of The Achilles List, featuring Damian ‘Son Of Bob’ Marley, with the Chris Stapleton-fronted ballad The War Inside a close second. 

The rest of the album is all over the map, from electro-rocker Let’s Get The Party Started (featuring Oli Sykes of Bring Me The Horizon) to Charmed I’m Sure’s dub-step metal. It’s fun hearing Morello stretch out, though all but the most broadminded RATM fans are unlikely to feel the same way

Dave Everley

Dave Everley has been writing about and occasionally humming along to music since the early 90s. During that time, he has been Deputy Editor on Kerrang! and Classic Rock, Associate Editor on Q magazine and staff writer/tea boy on Raw, not necessarily in that order. He has written for Metal Hammer, Louder, Prog, the Observer, Select, Mojo, the Evening Standard and the totally legendary Ultrakill. He is still waiting for Billy Gibbons to send him a bottle of hot sauce he was promised several years ago.