Rage Against the Machine perform Fistful of Steel for the first time since 1997 as New York residency raises $1 million for charity

Tim Commerford, Zack de la Rocha and Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine perform at Madison Square Garden
(Image credit: Astrida Valigorsky/Getty Images)

Last week, Rage Against the Machine concluded the North American leg of their Public Service Announcement reunion tour with a five-day New York residency, during which the band performed deep cut Fistful of Steel for the first time since 1997.

Thanks to the residency, the band have also announced they have managed to raise a total of $1 million for charity through the sales of charity tickets.

Fistful of Steel, taken from the band’s 1992 self titled LP, was revisited during RATM’s penultimate residency show that took place at Madison Square Garden, and shared the set list with a number of more commonly performed hits.

On the night, Tom Morello and co performed Killing in the Name, Guerrilla Radio, Township Rebellion and Sleep Now in the Fire and a collection of other songs from their first three studio albums: 1992’s Rage Against The Machine, 1996's Evil Empire and 1999’s The Battle Of Los Angeles.

Footage of Fistful of Steel – which preceded a cover of Bruce Springsteen’s The Ghost of Tom Joad – can be found below.

Elsewhere during the residency, Rage once again teamed up with Run the Jewels for a cover of the latter’s Close Your Eyes (And Count to Fuck), which they’d already performed together earlier this year. 

Other tracks that made it onto the residency set list include Bombtrack, Bullet in the Head, Down Rodeo, Vietnow, Born of a Broken Man and more.

As for the money raised for charity, 10 per cent of residency tickets sold were sold with charity pricing, which meant higher fees were introduced in an effort to generate additional revenue for charitable organizations.

On social media, the band confirmed the funds will be split between three non-profit organizations: the Immigrant Defense Project, Neighbors Together and The Campaign Against Hunger.

The Immigration Defense Project provides legal aid to people in the US facing deportation “and other adverse immigration consequences”, while the latter two aim to give food and other resources to those in need in New York.

In order to donate to Neighbors Together and The Campaign Against Hunger, the band have joined forces with Why Hunger, whose mission it is to “provide critical resources to support grassroots movements and fuel community solutions rooted in social, environmental, racial and economic justice”.

Charity pricing was also implemented throughout the whole Public Service Announcement reunion tour, meaning the total sum of funds raised for the above charities equals $2,223,345. 

Zack de la Rocha was indeed present for the final five shows, despite having injured his leg on stage earlier in the tour. As a result of the injury, the band recently canceled their European tour dates following “medical guidance”.

“Per medical guidance, Zack de la Rocha has been advised that the August and September 2022 UK and European leg of the Rage Against the Machine tour cannot proceed,” the band wrote. “It is with great disappointment that we announce this cancellation.”

De la Rocha reportedly tore his Achilles during the band’s rendition of Bullet in the Head on July 11.

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Matt Owen

Matt is a Staff Writer, writing for Guitar World, Guitarist and Total Guitar. He has a Masters in the guitar, a degree in history, and has spent the last 16 years playing everything from blues and jazz to indie and pop. When he’s not combining his passion for writing and music during his day job, Matt records for a number of UK-based bands and songwriters as a session musician.