"Revelations" (Epic / Interscope; 2006)

Reviewed by Jeff Rogers

This is the last of Audioslave on disc. The three albums they created will forever be talked about; even though the musical relationship only lasted four years, they gave us plenty of music to listen to. The regrouping of Rage Against the Machine and Chris Cornell's departure is proof enough that all we have left is the music and what incredible music it is. Tom Morello's guitar is simply amazing and, since Audioslave wasn't political like RATM, I could listen without reservation.

The first cut kicks off this funky metal CD with a bang and, after that, it becomes a groovy good time. This disc has a lot more hip sounding songs than their first two -- it's different but in a unique way. I like the songs but I usually just listen for Tom to create some great guitar interjection and he never fails.

Cornell handled all the lyrical duties while the rest of the band wrote the music. Since Chris wasn't as political as the rest of the band, his distaste for the Bush administration never found its way into the lyrics. "Sound Of A Gun" does have an anti-war theme to it and "Wide Awake" was a slap at Bush for Hurricane Katrina but he never threw any real punches like RATM did; he seemed to be proud of that.

Chris put out a couple a solo records after this and Tom Morello did some side work as well. Audioslave was great and even though they haven't talked about getting back together, I'll still hold out for more of Cornell's voice and Morello's guitar for a later date.

The best of the last are "Revelations," "Original Fire," and "Shape Of Things to Come."

Audioslave: Chris Cornell – vocals; Tom Morello – guitar; Tim Commerford – bass; Brad Wilk – drums.

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"Out of Exile" (Interscope; 2005)

Reviewed by Jeff Rogers

Audioslave is eponymous for fusing two bands together that probably wouldn’t have even looked in each other’s direction, much less thought about collaborating: Rage Against The Machine and Soundgarden. Both stood for very different things, but somehow the merging of the two caused a musical spark that lasted three CDs. Most people thought this would be nothing more than a side project but it grew into much more than that. 

“Out of Exile” is Audioslave’s sophomore disc. I reveled when they released their debut back in 2002. I loved the sound of both bands and since the guitar of Tom Morello has always amazed me and the voice of Chris Cornell captured me you couldn’t mop up the drool fast enough when I heard another disc was forthcoming.

Since Cornell has his own style he brings a different element to Audioslave. Morello squelches more sounds out of an amp than should be allowed. The band backs both with all they’ve got. I went back and listened to some old RATM and Soundgarden. The blend is almost seamless.

Morello is a chameleon and shines on “The Worm” with a wicked guitar injection. Song writing credits go to both Cornell and the  band; this shows perhaps Audioslave was more of a collaborative effort than Rage Against the Machine.

Audioslave deserves a place in your music memory.

The best tracks are “Your Time Has Come,” “Drown Me Slowly,” “Man Or Animal?” and “Dandelion.”

Audioslave: Chris Cornell – vocals; Tim Commerford – bass; Brad Wilk – drums; Tom Morello – guitars.

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"Audioslave" (Epic; 2002)

Reviewed by R. Scott Bolton

I was pissed off when Soundgarden broke up. I had pegged the band as the savior of hard rock. Their unique sound was giving the genre new respect and popularity. When the split, I saw all that going out the window.

Little did I know that hard rock would have a resurgence that continues strongly even today, with or without Soundgarden.

Then, when Soundgarden's Chris Cornell joined up with the remaining members of Rage Against the Machine, I didn't know what to expect. Would Cornell step into Zach de La Rocha's shoes and would Rage continue on their current course? Would Cornell turn the band back in the direction of Soundgarden? Would they become something new and completely different?

When the CD was finally released (and I say "finally" because there were times we thought we'd never see it) I was thrilled with the results. It would be incorrect to say there is no trace of Rage Against the Machine's sound in Audioslave, but the band's unique sound definitely leans back toward early Soundgarden and, in my book, that's a good thing.

But it's not just the Soundgarden comparison that makes Audioslave so great. It's the fact that the band has gone back to the well of originality that Soundgarden (and, grudgingly admitted, Rage Against the Machine) milked so well. Audioslave's sound is powerful, emotional, funky, raging, hot, thoughtful. Hell, man, it's everything. And it still kicks your ass track by track by track. Things slow down occasionally but, when they do, they don't lose your attention. Thanks to the band's excellent songwriting, you're hooked for the long haul. And that says a lot.

Interestingly, I can easily see Soundgarden fans falling in love with Audioslave, but I'm not so sure about RATM fans. Gone are the rap, gone are the politics. What's still there is RATM's edgier, heavier sound. It works for me.

Let's hope that Audioslave stays permanent and doesn't become a side project. I expect lots of good things to come from this band.

Audioslave: Chris Cornell - vocals; Tim Commerford - bass; Brad Wilk - drums; Tom Morello - drums.

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Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.


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Revised: 07 Aug 2023 21:18:43 -0400 .