That Time Rage Against the Machine Didn’t Do What They Were Told + Swore on Live BBC Broadcast
How many times have you heard Rage Against the Machine's "Killing in the Name" without Zack de la Rocha's defiant curse-filled chorus? We're guessing it's pretty rare and perhaps doesn't hit with the same impact. But as one of the song's central themes is "fuck you I won't do what you tell me," it should probably come as no surprise that the band didn't exactly follow the rules while once playing the song for a live BBC broadcast.
Thanks to social media, this humorous clip is once again making the rounds. As the song builds to its cathartic climax, it appears as though Zack de la Rocha and crew are going to adhere to the standards of the live broadcast, excising the f-bomb and merely stating "I won't do what you tell me" as the music intensifies. But likely feeling the thousands of viewers and listeners who more than likely were screaming the unspoken parts, de la Rocha can't hold back as the song hits its climactic peak.
Out comes the middle finger to the camera and the defiant shout, "Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me," and it's allowed to continue a few more times before the performance gets interrupted.
"Get rid of it," calls out a voice from the control room as the screen goes to a logo of BBC Radio 5 Live. The director can then be heard telling the crew on the broadcast, "Sorry we needed to get rid of that because that suddenly turned into something we were not ex- .... well we were expecting it, but we asked them not to do it and they did it anyway."
Exactly! It's right there in the lyrics, so perhaps it shouldn't come as a surprise. Revisit this classic broadcast moment below.
As you might expect, the posting generated some great responses as well. Check out a sampling below:
And even BBC Radio 5 Live reacted to the circulated posting with a simple facepalm emoji.
Rage Against the Machine fans will get to experience the track in all of its uncensored glory this summer when the band finally gets to kick off their reunion tour that was first announced pre-pandemic. At present, there's a July 9 tour kickoff in East Troy, Wisconsin, with a European tour leg to follow in late August and September. The rest of the North American rescheduled run will take place in the first half of 2023. See all of their scheduled dates here.