Tom Morello’s The Nightwatchman, his acoustic protest folk music project, released a new album World Wide Rebel Songs yesterday Aug. 30
Morello started The Nightwatchman a few years ago while he was playing with Audioslave. He started by searching the newspaper for small open mic nights, including LA local spots like Hotel Café, playing acoustic sets under the moniker The Nightwatchman and honing his craft. Check out the interview and a few tracks from World Wide Rebel Songs after the jump!In Perry Ferrell’s interview we get an idea of what Morello is trying to accomplish with The Nightwatchman, as well as a look into his role in using music and benefit shows to support international solidarity from Korean guitar manufacturers’ unions to the Teachers’ union in Wisconsin.
Morello describes his sound as a combination of Woody Guthrie and Bob Dylan. And there is undoubtedly a Dylan-esque feel both in the lyrics and Morello’s vocals. Morello’s description of the band’s purpose also resonates the same Dylan theme: “With groups like Audioslave or Rage the idea was to create a moshpit in the field or in the arena, with The Nightwatchman the idea is to create a moshpit in people’s minds.”
Morello has a degree from Harvard in political Science which infuses his songs with genuine political commentary. His music is a sort of call to arms, not for violence but for organization and change. In the interview Morello talks about his time as a scheduling secretary for U.S. Senator Alan Cranston, and the difficulty elected officials have in effecting real change. Instead, Morello refers to the most significant changes in recent memory, whether it be universal suffrage, apartheid, desegregation, or the fall of the Berlin wall, and asserts that all of these resulted from the organization and movement of a people. And he wants to create the soundtrack for that struggle!
“3 chords and the truth can be a powerful force!”
Check out the entire interview here, including 6 tracks, and then go buy the album!
Check out the first track from World Wide Rebel Songs: “Black Spartacus Heart Attack Machine”
Check out the title track “World Wide Rebel Songs”:
“Save the Hammer for the Man” cowritten with Ben Harper, which is a very folky track combining Harper’s vocals with Morello’s guitar in a nostalgic 60’s protest song. That combination alone is worth listening to!