Sound — 10
Live & Rare is a compilation of live and rare performances written and performed by Rage Against the Machine, released only in Japan. It is an album made up of "official bootlegs" previously available on other singles. Let me just say, this is everything that is RATM and more. This album leans more to a hip-hop and rap based sound, but don't let that discourage you from this. I think this album demonstrates what RATM are really capable of, and urge anyone to buy this.
Lyrics — 10
Zack De La Rocha is one hell of a lyricist. The lyrics are very poetic and powerful. His lyrics in general are very political, and fit the music absolutely perfectly. It seems that on some of the live 'rare' tracks Zack slightly experiments with lyrics. On one song in particular, 'Hadda Be Playing On The Jukebox' Zack reads a poem by Allen Ginsberg, in which he gets a chance to scream his political angst with immense power and emotion. On another entitled 'Intro (Black Steel In The Hour Of Chaos' Zack uses the lyrics from an old Public Enemy song for this Rage jam (they even bring out Chuck D).
Overall Impression — 9
It is a very unique sounding album and is hard to compare to other albums/artists. In terms of sheer power, emotion and aggresion, then this is everything you would expect from RATM, they're live presense is captured perfectly. One of the most impressive song is the live version of 'Take The Power Back.' I love the overall atmosphere and feeling of the album, it's very primal and powerful. The only thing I slightly hated was that they could of had some better songs to have played live, but other that, it is brilliant. If it were stolen/lost then I would to buy it again. But seeing as it is only released it may take some patience browsing through eBay.