Bulls on Parade

Bulls on Parade

Infobox Single | Name = Bulls On Parade

Artist = Rage Against the Machine
from Album = Evil Empire
Released = 1996
Format = CD, 7", 12"
Genre = Rap metal, alternative metal, funk metal
Length = 3 min 51 s
Producer = Brendan O'Brien, Rage Against the Machine
Last single = "Year of tha Boomerang"
This single = "Bulls on Parade"
Next single = "People of the Sun"

"Bulls on Parade" is a song released by Rage Against the Machine in 1996, and can be found on their second album "Evil Empire".


One of Rage's signature songs, it deals with what is commonly referred to as the "military-industrial complex", which is the tendency of industry (the arms industry in particular) to encourage military action in order to gain military contracts, and therefore increase its profits. Lines such as "Weapons; not food, not homes, not shoes, not need, just feed the war cannibal-animal," and "what we don't know keeps the contracts alive and moving / they don't gotta burn the books they just remove 'em" are just a couple of examples of the several references to the military-industrial complex throughout the song. With the words, "Terror rains, drenching, quenching the thirst of the power dons," the song suggests that the fear of terrorism is used to manipulate the American populace into supporting dubious military action. The phrase "terror rains" also serves as a double entendre, which suggests that "terror reigns" by way of the government terror as a tool. The lyric "We don't have to burn the books, we just remove them" is a quote from the novel "Fahrenheit 451", while "Either drop tha hits like de la O or..." is a reference to Genovevo de la O, guerilla general of the Liberation Army of the South during the Mexican Revolution.

"Bulls on Parade" was performed on "Saturday Night Live" in April of 1996. Rage's two-song performance was cut to one song when the band attempted to hang inverted American flags from their amplifiers, a protest to having presidential candidate Steve Forbes as guest host on the program that night.

The song features one of Tom Morello's most famous guitar riffs and a highly unusual solo that sounds more like a turntable than a guitar by making use of the toggle switch and rubbing his hand along the strings parallel to the neck of the guitar. It is usually cited as the most famous example of Tom Morello's extremely innovative guitar playing antics, along with "Calm Like a Bomb" from their next album "The Battle Of Los Angeles". Morello has mentioned the Geto Boys as an influence on the sound of the song. [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bun9unLlhgQ&feature=related]

The song is also featured in the videogame, "". Tom Morello appears to be playing the bass section of the song. It also made number 15 on VH1's top 40 metal songs. This track was also used on The Collective's movie "Seasons".

Music video

The video for “Bulls on Parade” contains footage from the Sydney Big Day Out (25th of Jan, 1996) and their side show at the Hordern Pavilion in Sydney (27th of Jan, 1996). Throughout the video shots of young people protesting in the streets with political signs, military drills, flags, and other similar images are montaged together. An antique-style film is used which promotes scratches, dust and film grain. Several scenes show people wrapping 'Evil Empire' banners on walls, telephone posts and posting up other propaganda. In the scene where a character wearing a black "Libertyville" jacket with a baseball cap is painted by the renown Phantom Street Artist Joey Krebs who paints his iconoclastic figures on cities wall. This is the actual portrait created by the street artist of Tom Morello himself. Various lyrics are flashed on top of these scenes in a scrawled sort of chicken-scratch throughout.

Track listing

#"Bulls on Parade"
#"Hadda Be Playin' on a Jukebox [Live-version] "




External links

* [http://www.ratm.com/ Official Website]
* [http://www.axisofjustice.org/ Axis of Justice] Tom Morello and Serj Tankian's Activist Website "Axis Of Justice"
* [http://www.vietnow.org/ Vietnow.org] Rage Against The Machine news resource and forum

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