100 Greatest Guitarists: David Fricke's Picks

Tom Morello

26. Tom Morello

In the early days of Rage Against the Machine, Morello watched local California metal guitarists play "as fast as Yngwie Malmsteen" and realized, "That wasn't a race I wanted to run." So he began to experiment with the toggle switch on his guitar to produce an effect like a DJ scratching a record. The result was true rap metal and a redefinition of the guitar's potential. Morello absorbs hip-hop mixology as a true son of Grandmaster Flash and the Voodoo Child, making his riffs rumble and boom like crosstown turntable traffic.

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