ZACK QUITS

Firebrand claims that the group has not achieved their artistic and political goals...

Rage Against The Machine vocalist ZACK DE LA ROCHA has quit the band claiming that the group has not achieved their artistic and political goals.

In a statement issued by his publicist yesterday (October 18), De La Rocha said: “I feel that it is now necessary to leave Rage because our decision-making process has completely failed. It is no longer meeting the aspirations of all four of us collectively as a band, and from my perspective, has undermined our artistic and political ideal.”

De La Rocha continued : “I am extremely proud of our work, both as activists and musicians, as well as indebted and grateful to every person who has expressed solidarity and shared this incredible experience with us.”

The remaining members of Rage – guitarist Tom Morello, bassist Tim Commerford and drummer Brad Wilk – have decided to continue to work together and Morello told MTV that he agreed with De La Rocha‘s statement about the decision-making process and that, “I have no hard feelings… we wish Zac well.”

In an official statement, the three remaining band members said : “We’re proud of our history and what we’ve accomplished musically and politically over the last nine years. We are committed to continuing with our efforts to effect change in the social and political arena and look forward to creating more ground-breaking music for our fans. In other words, we’ll keep it loud, keep it funky, and most definitely rock on…”

As previously reported on NME.COM, Zack De Rocha has already commenced work on a solo album. He entered a US studio earlier in the year with El-P, a member of New York rap group Company Flow. Other artists that he has rumoured to have worked with on the project include DJ Shadow and Roni Size.

His decision to leave Rage comes at a time when the group were in the public eye more than ever. The band’s last shows in the UK with De La Rocha were at the Carling Weekend Festival in Reading and Leeds over the August Bank Holiday weekend. Also in that month Rage fans were pelted with rubber bullets as armed police broke up a disturbance following a performance by the band opposite the Democratic Party Conference in LA.

More recently, last month, bassist Tim Commerford was arrested for disorderly conduct and spent a night in jail after last month’s MTV video music awards in New York. Commerford climbed a stage set and refused to come down, rocking it backwards and forwards.

There is currently no information on the official RATM website, [url=]www.ratm.com, and NME.COM awaits an official statement from the band’s UK press officer.

The band’s record company, Epic, will release a Rage album of cover versions on December 5 and there is a live album in the can waiting for release next year.