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RUSTY RAGE!

Chris Cornell is joining Rage, ending months of speculation...

RAGE AGAINST THE MACHINE are set to replace former frontman ZACK DE LA ROCHA with CHRIS CORNELL, it has been reported.

The appointment would bring to an end months of speculation about the future of the band. Cornell, former frontman of Seattle's Soundgarden, had been in the frame since February, when Rage guitarist Tom Morello confirmed he had been working with the band on some "groundbreaking material".

However, he stopped short of admitting that the singer had become a full-time member.

It is now reported that the reason for the reluctance to make an official announcement was contractual. Cornell has a solo deal with Interscope, while Rage are signed to Epic Records. Both labels have been busy sorting through the red tape that would allow Cornell to join.

As part of the agreement, Rage Against The Machine cannot, it is said, use their name for any future releases. They have not yet decided on a new name.

A spokesperson for Rage could neither confirm nor deny the story at press time.

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