After touring with Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band and contributing to the new album High Hopes, Tom Morello is ready to rock on his own. The Rage Against the Machine and Audioslave guitarist is currently making his first solo rock album, Billboard reports.
Morello told the publication that his recent work with Springsteen encouraged him to move beyond the folk vein of his other solo endeavor as the Nightwatchman. “The first time I ever sang with an electric guitar in my hands was ‘The Ghost of Tom Joad’ [with Springsteen] at the Anaheim Pond in 2008. Until then I’d kept my folksinging career and my electric guitar shredding career completely separate,” he said. “It was on that stage that I realized there might be a way to combine all the things I do as a songwriter and a guitar player, and this record is going to be that.”
That show in Anaheim marked Morello’s first experience playing with Springsteen and the E Street band, sparking a close friendship that led to the guitarist taking Steven Van Zandt’s place on a tour of Australia last year. The band recorded new tracks between the shows and for a period after the tour ended. Morello ended up playing on eight songs for High Hopes, which is due out on Janurary 14th.
“I discovered Bruce in my early 20s. I had not grown up on it, but when I did discover it, I went all in,” Morello recently told Rolling Stone. “All the cassettes that I listened to when I moved from Illinois to California were Bruce Springsteen cassettes, and to later find myself onstage in Brisbane rocking ‘Badlands’ was just a trip.”
Morello says he has a large group of songs for the new solo album already written, and he plans to record them after the tour with Springsteen closes on March 2nd. “I want to make the craziest guitar record that anyone’s ever heard,” he said. “The idea is that this is the Hendrix of now.”