TuneDig is an in-depth and informed conversation between two lifelong friends about the power of music — one album at a time.

In each episode, we go down the rabbit hole to spend a while in the strange world we discover. We take an honest look at creativity in all its complexity—from writing and production to history and cultural impact.

We promise you’ll learn something new every time, no matter how much you already love the album we explore.


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Episode 011

Rage Against the Machine

Rage Against the Machine

On the eve of an opportunity for Americans to lift their voices in demand of a more perfect union, we seek wisdom for this moment from the uncompromising, incendiary vision of our generation’s most effective revolutionaries. Troubling as it may be that so much still rings so true in Rage’s quarter-century-old debut, there is strength to be drawn from its message: We, the People, have a world to win.


Note: our transcripts are mostly AI-generated for now. 

Episode 011: Rage Against the Machine's "Rage Against the Machine": Audio automatically transcribed by Sonix

Episode 011: Rage Against the Machine's "Rage Against the Machine": this mp3 audio file was automatically transcribed by Sonix with the best speech-to-text algorithms. This transcript may contain errors.

You're listening to TuneDig, a podcast for music lovers. The premise is simple: in each episode, we dig deep into an album we love and then we give away a copy to you of that album on vinyl. Go to TuneDig.com To see what's up for grabs and learn more about us.

Today, we're talking about Rage Against the Machine's self-titled debut.

The more things change, the more they stay the same and nothing feels more twenty eighteen than this record that was released in November of 92.

For me, this album is a reminder and was of the dangers of being too politically calculating because this reminds me of what it means to just do something even when it's not perfect, because going back and listening to this record, I've sort of like a simultaneous conflicting opinion about it. Looking back on it, it feels cheesy at times and yet also a lot of respect for the fact that they just did it. So I find myself kind of going back and listening and getting a little bit frustrated at how I feel. It could have been better executed, but then again, reminding myself what was the last thing I did that actually caused anybody to change anything or do anything I haven't. Certainly not to any level that matches the rage against the machine.

There's no overthinking any of it.

They are just trying to take pure, raw anger.

It's a fist through a glass window for 45 minutes or however, I mean, it's just it's so raw.

It's very political. It's very Sun Tzu Art of war. It's studied its enemies and it uses the same moves. It's simplified, it's primal. It appeals to the reptile brain of the people that is trying to reach.

They made it clear that this wasn't a gimmick from the first moment of this band all the way through to them breaking up. Zach said he left the band because he got tired of the politics, not changing to the degree that he actually wanted them to. And so, again, that's why I say kind of looking back on it, there's a lot more respect for me that builds up over time in terms of the approach of the individual guys in the band, but especially Zach and Tom, in that they chose to do something pointed and specific.

It's just fascinating to me that some of the topics of this record are it's been 30 years since Martin Luther King told us that we were still waiting on the revolution to happen. And here we are again, almost 30 years past this record coming out. And it's still kind of feels like we're waiting on the revolution to happen. Yet to take a long enough world view is sort of an imposition of nihilism.

But these guys are the opposite of that. They took a historical perspective and they said all we have is right now. I mean, they would go on to say as a famous refrain on a later record, it has to start somewhere.

It has to start sometime. What better place than here? What better time than now?

And that is interesting that that sense of hope never faded to maintain a sense of hope through such a seething, educated anger.

There's something to be said for that, that they were able to hold onto that for such a long time, I think really says something about the purity of what they were going after.

What was really interesting about this record being as big as it was, is the context in which it was released.

It was born in to what people were hoping was going to become an apolitical time.

People had staked a lot of hope in the 92 election and the promise of progressive policies that wound up being more of a false neo liberal bill of goods, progressive as in dinner. Clinton was this cool saxophone playing president, but he also authored a free trade agreement that outsourced tons of jobs. Police brutality arguably got worse somehow, and the gap widened in every way. That was really the start of what we came to see as the one percent right. That the aristocracy, all of the gains that were celebrated in that time went to a very small concentration of people.

So for two young people like Zach and Tom Morello, who were educated and who were the descendants of revolutionaries who had seen this happen before, they were prepared for this moment.

And they were so angered by living in a country where we had all the means to not make the same mistakes and share. We found ourselves again.

Understanding more about their upbringing helped me to understand more about their position and about their approach to not only music, but especially politics.

Zach's paternal grandfather was a Mexican revolutionary then. His father was a Mexican-American artist of Jewish descent. But diving further into it and hearing stories like when I was a kid, he had asked his dad for one of his paintings and his dad was in the middle of essentially like a nervous breakdown. He had been a part of this artist collective called Loss For, and they had achieved an amount of fame. But his dad was having kind of a breakdown because he wasn't getting, as he put it, he wasn't getting the fortune from the fame. He was basically still having trouble making ends meet, despite expecting that when you became a successful artist, that you would be able to, you know, pay for food and living. And so we kind of had a breakdown and went very recluse. And so his son is there asking him for a painting that he wanted. And his dad not only tells him no, but that day decides to make Zac assist him in destroying all of his art in his entire home, taking things off the wall, taking them out of storage, shredding them with scissors, and then burning everything he ever made, including all of. Is supplies in fire? That's a real traumatic moment for a child to experience their parent going through that.

That is a world view shaping incident, right. On the flip side, you have Tom Morello, who's so interesting to me. He was the great nephew of Jomo Kenyatta, who is the leader of the Kenyan independence movement. He goes to Harvard. He studies protests. A senior thesis is on student protest movements. But then also there's this dude who grew up on The Clash and Joe Strummer and really wants to be a singer songwriter and still has that like a little kid purity of vision. So he goes out to L.A. to join this band lock up. That was on Geffen Records.

So one of the things that drew me to this record initially and one of the things that I think drew a lot of people to the record initially is the ability to literally judge this book by its cover. There's a lot of good reading out there on the story behind the self-immolation of Thick Kwang Duck. I know there's more nuance to the pronunciation, but Duck was a Buddhist monk in Saigon in 63 and he was protesting the oppression of Buddhists in his region. It was a single revolutionary act that sent shockwaves just by awareness and by media of morality.

He sat on the cushion. He was chanting Omeish The Infinite Light, and one of his fellow monks doused him in gasoline and the only time he was not still was dropping the match into his own lap.

The really interesting thing in the retrospective that came out on the twenty fifth anniversary, there was a whole separate story that came out just about the cover art, and it closed the story by saying that Ducks' remains were cremated. Yet even after his self-immolation and his cremation, his heart remained intact. It's now considered a holy relic and a symbol of compassion. Everything the band stood for was captured in this photo the commitment, compassion, steely resolve and defiance and a sense of history. So everything you need to know about this record is right there on the cover.

And it's one that, you know, I'm sure they talked about and they were like, this pretty much gets at it. But I can't imagine they imagined they knew the degree to which it was the perfect image.

This band struggled with the idea of nonviolence, despite channeling the messages of people like Dr. Martin Luther King who advocated for it. And so I think it's kind of fascinating to consider this cover art as self-immolation. It cannot be nonviolent because nonviolence includes yourself, and yet it's the most earnest. At least harmful form, but then the after effect of this spreading out into the world and making change happen not only to where JFK would say no news picture in history is generated, so much emotion over the world as this one and him actually changing things. Some believe as a direct result of this image, rage, especially this first band, represents that duality of choosing to do the right thing, even though you know that it's not perfect and being aware that that lack of perfection leaves a vulnerability because that same picture was distributed throughout communist China as evidence of what it called US imperialism. Should that monk have never have burned himself alive? If he knew that communists would end up using it as propaganda in a different way? I don't think anyone would agree that he shouldn't have done that at all. And yet that's still what happened. You can be as earnest as humanly possible and commit the perfect act and have the perfect picture taken of it. And still, people will choose to use it differently than you intended. And still, you don't have full control over the impact that you have. And to me, like thinking about it that way is what gives me respect for this record and just choosing to do the thing, regardless of whether it was going to be perfect. I mean, they put inside of the liner no samples, no keyboards and no synthesizers were used in the making of this record, like they chose to go for it in the purest way that they could. And they did. And it managed to have an outsized impact, despite occasionally feeling dated.

When you look back on it, the world was never really ready for them. Right. And that's that's part of what I think you're getting at with this insight. The world at large is probably going to get it wrong, but that shouldn't stop you from delivering your vision uncompromisingly. It reminds me about men in black quote, where Tommy Lee Jones and Will Smith are sitting on the bench.

The person, the smart people are dumb, panicky, dangerous animals. And you know it. Fifteen hundred years ago, everybody knew the earth was the center of the universe. Five hundred years ago, everybody knew the earth was flat. And fifteen minutes ago, you knew that people were alone on this planet.

Imagine what you know tomorrow. This is a band that knew the odds were long and they they stood defiantly in opposition of them anyway.

And here we are, like with the other overtly political record that we covered.

We've been talking for a hot minute and we haven't talked about the music itself.

Yeah, let's talk about the music because it continues to perpetuate my experience of being both enamored and frustrated. Let's talk about this, OK?

First track on the album. Bomb track. Yeah. Why is it called Bomb Track? Because it's a bomb track.

That's not even a joke. That's the real reason. This kind of stuff. You're going to kick off a political record with a self immolating Monck on the front of it. And the first track I get to is named after how dope the track itself is. Can this be a bonus track, please? If you're going to rip off Funkadelic, could you not make it a track? That's about how cool you are.

I feel that, but it's worth listening to because it's basically a Funkadelic song, Alice, in my fantasies.

So strange track, and then we get to killing in the name.

You do what they told you. I'll get to what they told you. Now get to what they told you. Now get to what they told you.

The killing in the name was somewhat of a response to the Rodney King beatings, a lot of those songs on that record have, while somehow still too soon thing about them, sadly, because nothing has changed or not enough, not enough, that should make you real mad. I did see the song compared to some interesting other ones that are also about systemic injustice, like Bob Dylan's Masters of War and The Clash. Straight to Hell and Public Enemy's fight.

The power bloody down here. But he never made me straight out the before black and I'm proud of my heroes don't appear on those families that looked at my. But read the full text of priority number one.

This one struck a nerve it as a shot of adrenaline. It's sound and fury all at once.

I don't want to only come in with criticism, so I'm going to make sure that the edit displays an appropriately neutral to positive attitude about this record, because I do like it.

It's just really easy for me to kind of pull out the parts that I wish were a little bit different.

So this song is one example. So you got the intro, right, the four downbeats and everything comes in. That's pretty cool.

Ok, so we're cool so far, and then we hit this riff that's fun on Guitar Hero but is absolutely useless inside of this song.

If they had just gone from the little weird boom, boom, boom to killing in the name of and then dropped in, the song would have been even better.

So I am obviously really into guitar, and I've really always respected the way that Tom Morello approached guitar. I mean, he was he was literally doing things with guitar that no one else was doing, and he was pioneering ways of doing it, especially in popular music. That was rare and it was fascinating. And it really added something totally different to this music in a way that made it catchy and made it interesting. And so there but there are times where because I have such high expectations and aspirations for that sound, either I noticed something like that little extraneous guitar work or times where I feel like there's a rhythm section, let him down every now and then.

Interesting, because my thesis was going to be this was one of the best rhythm sections of the past 30 or 40 years.

Ok, if we disagree, I could be convinced one way or another about Tim Comerford.

There's an interesting balance between the aggression and heaviness of his tone and the fluidity and funkiness of his playing. I saw him compared by multiple people to James Jamerson, which I thought was really interesting.

But for all of the gas that the other guys in this band, I feel like Bradwell is musically the MVP of this band.

There's such a groovy ness to this dude.

I think Tom Morello himself said no one in the history of rock music can make a field of people bound up and down like Brad.

He has a groove and a feel that is completely inimitable. And this band would have been totally different if he hadn't had his natural feel.

Yeah, I think that's fair. And we don't actually have different viewpoints. It's just that I find myself wanting this to be more of a guitar record.

But a lot of the reasons that it was successful is because it wasn't because it was accessible rhythmically and lyrically. I mean, the two examples for me are settled for nothing and know your enemy. He had very specific guitar solos and parts in there that really could have benefited from a more technical rhythm.

It's a less of an actual criticism or even one pretending to be objective. It's not objective. It's just that there are times where I wish I would have seen what this band as more of a technical, almost metal band would have been like.

The other thing that I really want to mention is that this was recorded at Sound City, the HQ of it is really interesting. I think if it had been recorded somewhere else, it would have sounded absolutely terrible. But everything that was ever recorded at Sound City sounds incredible, whether you like that kind of music or not. So this was the same place that Fleetwood Mac recorded and Tom Petty and Nevermind was recorded, but they did something as sound city that nobody else had done. They felt like they weren't getting the sound of their live show in the recorded environment. So they invited like 50 people and just basically cut most of the record with a live show in the studio, because this material and this ideology needs other people to thrive.

That's great, because I was going to say I feel like it's recorded in a way that makes you feel like you're in an isolated room, in a private concert with them playing all these songs. It's so crisp, but it feels so.

Yeah, nothing sounds like it. Still, other bands tried to sound like them but didn't have their feel and didn't have their combination of elements. And so they totally missed the boat. Right. A lot of people blame Wrage for being largely responsible for the rise of new metal and new metal took all the worst parts of the idea of rage and the idea of grunge.

That was in another instance of how Rage could have known the things that they would give rise to.

But as far as the sound, the other thing that a lot of these other records didn't have was this was mixed by Andy Wallace and mastered by Bob Ludwig, and it was recorded at Sound City. So if you look up the discography of those two people in that place, this thing was grown in special soil, you know, and had a certain kind of rainwater.

So because that's where that moving on to some other songs. So a little bit later. Know your enemy is a really interesting one to me, because as much as we've talked about giving rise to new metal, this band was also really intertwined with Tool. Tom was friends with Adam, who is the guitarist, introduced him to Maynard James Keenan, and they would eventually go on to create tool vocal support for Maynard James Keenan on the song.

Apparently, he filled in at the last minute for another member of Jane's Addiction who was supposed to help and had to bail. But another person from Jane's Addiction provided some percussion and this really weird interlude. Yes.


It's like almost Santtana, this is the most classic protest music song on the record.

Totally, yeah. And then this is the most impactful vocal delivery on the entire record. Zach does a lot of repeating on this record, and I'll try not to harp on that too much, but this is where it works.

Are American dreams, all of which are American dreams, all of which are American dreams, all of which are American dreams.

I think the interesting thing about the title, Know Your Enemy is so much of this record is spent talking about the other or are they who is the enemy? And this is a really inward song. And there are so many interviews in 92, 93, 94, where they talked about their mission statement being to wake people up from complacency, which, you know, twenty five years on. Sounds like a stupid cliche, but it's a stupid cliche because hundreds of bands try to copycat them doing it and they try to copycat for middle America. What had been done for black America generation before them. Marello had this quote, We're encouraged by the media and Madison Avenue to be complacent. Coggs We want to wake people up to the grossest crimes and injustices in our society and to the fact that our government helps perpetuate these injustices.

And it's a conversation that a whole new generation of young people are learning to articulate. And then it's quickly followed by a cover of Led Zeppelin's Kashmir. What song is that we got?

I know you were somewhat joking in comparing it to Kashmir, but I know Marello was super influenced by Deep Purple and Zeppelin and Sabbath.

He was in a Zeppelin cover band.

I did not know that he was the singer. Oh, OK.

That was also my reaction.

One of the interesting things that I read about how other people weren't able to get the rage thing right was Marello became known for his single Coile Sound, which was influenced by those bands of that era. Bands that would try to imitate rage were also influenced by like Metallica and Slayer. Instead of using the classic rock Rosetta Stone, they used the heavy metal Rosetta Stone, and it became a totally different thing.

There are a few places on this record where the songs sound exactly like the song that they're copying. But this song rules anyway. Definitely the stand out is just straight up reading from the counterintelligence program. Mimos Counterintelligence Program was a systematic and as it's written here, successful attempt by the FBI to subvert and sabotage the Black Panther Party. But he's reading from a memo in which I think it was J. Edgar Hoover is talking about MLK and so he reads it out.


You're reading from this thing that gets discovered, the dark underbelly of the government, and then you flip around and in the song with a quote from MLK speech that he gave on the Selma to Montgomery march and he gave on the steps of the state capitol building in Montgomery.

What's so great is what you saw.

That moment, listening to it, was really where it hit me that the point of this song was not enough has changed since MLK spoke these words. And then here we are, almost the same amount of time later and it feels like not enough has changed. I don't need to be so cliche, but like, it kind of woke me up in that moment, right? It made me pay attention again because it made me connect dots that it wasn't necessarily connecting.

And you talk about the more things change, the more they stay the same changes driven by people who don't have a stake in reinforcing the status quo. And that's really what this is about, right? People who know it can be better and people who have a stake in things staying the way that they are. So I think about the Parkland kids, same thing. I mean, sometimes their rhetoric is somewhat simplistic, but it's noble and it's energized because they know they don't keep yelling. Nothing's ever going to change.

So that's a great modern day version of rage. Probably the best I've heard is those kids. They know that what they're saying is imperfect. They're going to make mistakes. But the point is they're consistent. They're there and they're going to do whatever it takes to make the change that they want to see.

And honestly, only the heartless would fault them for that. That's really similar to what comes across here.

I think it comes down to the very last strains at the end of this record where it does sound like something a teenager would say.

Freedom. Yeah, freedom. Yeah, right.

And it sounds silly when it's not in that enormous breakdown at the end of that song, just like a pure throw your instruments down as hard as you possibly can fit of rage again. The enemy is complacency.

The enemy is not questioning everything that you've been fed into frame a world around you that makes you just stay the course so that a handful of people can continue to benefit from the world that they've designed at your expense.

So this record is really angry because you should be really angry that somebody has tried to lull you in complacency for their own benefit.

It makes me think that James Baldwin quote, which is specific to the plight of black Americans, but to some degree can be extrapolated to the lives of any of the marginalized or anyone who's ever been taken advantage of.

He said to be a Negro in this country and to be relatively conscious is to be in a rage almost all the time.

But that's the point of this record. It's young, it's imperfect, but it is relatively conscious.

And they went on to make that the lynchpin of their thing. And they they made a statement that there is something deeper to be had by being relatively conscious and there will be another rage against the machine if there isn't one.

Well, on its way right now, we're better off having a rage against the machine in a less than perfect world, than being under the illusion that maybe we are in a perfect world, you know?

And so I think I speak for both of us when I say one of the imperfect but important things that you can do and one of the reasons we scheduled this episode for right now is because if you haven't voted yet, please vote.

I don't care who you vote for. In a way, I care who you vote for.

I care a lot.

I care who you vote for, but I'm not going to tell you who to vote for, because what's more important than that is that you do it and it's going to be an imperfect act. And it will feel wrong sometimes because sometimes you'll have to vote for people that aren't perfect. But that imperfect act is still the most rebellious and helpful thing that you can do for yourself and for other people. And so this is your one opportunity to do that.

If you've stopped raging against the machine, please let this be the moment that you start again.

Muruga is again.

Go to TuneDig.com to sign up for our emails and click the link in the email when you want to win. That's it.

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Original "Bitches Brew" Art

To celebrate the endless creativity of Bitches Brew—and especially its famous album artwork—TuneDig partnered with two incredible Atlanta-based artists to create one-of-a-kind, handpainted gatefolds.

With the spirit of the original art in mind, each artist brought their own vision to life. These pieces will spark conversation for any jazz fan.

Each piece includes a new vinyl copy of Bitches Brew. 100% of the purchase price goes directly to the artist, so take this opportunity to support the arts in the raddest possible way.

Seriously. There’s literally only one of each. Make it yours. 😎


Season 6—featuring our most eclectic selection of albums yet—concludes July 1, 2022.

TuneDig Episode 50: Funkadelic’s “Maggot Brain”

Before uniting one nation under a groove, the lysergic lords of chaos in Funkadelic harnessed wild lightning into an amulet called Maggot Brain, bestowing the bearer with raw, dark power stronger than any force known to man. Between reaching our 50th episode and coping with the “maggots in the mind” of today’s universe, it felt like the right time to free our minds. We hope y’all’s asses will follow.

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TuneDig Episode 49: Alice Coltrane’s “Journey in Satchidananda”

The story of Alice Coltrane — an accomplished bebop pianist from Detroit who transcended into something far greater before walking away from public life altogether — is a glimpse into what it means to be truly free. Alice’s masterpiece "Journey in Satchidananda" is a cosmic dance that sparked creation from destruction. And in a time when we’re all desperately searching for a spark of meaning and hope, Journey abides abundantly.

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TuneDig Episode 48: Heart’s “Little Queen”

Take a moment to appreciate Ann and Nancy Wilson, who kicked down the doors of rock ‘n’ roll’s boys’ club with their peerless guitar work, soaring soul vocals, and tight songcraft. 1977’s Little Queen — an oft-overlooked gem in the classic rock canon — offers a snapshot of those elements at their most urgent and pure, powered by the Wilsons’ simple motivation (as described by their producer): “It was a war.”

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TuneDig Episode 47: Tangerine Dream’s “Phaedra”

When you think of “electronic music,” what comes to mind may not be a genre you deeply love — hip-hop, house, new wave, or even dub reggae — but all of it owes some debt, scientifically or otherwise, to Tangerine Dream. Dig in with us as we study a prime example of the band’s brand of effortful innovation, where they patiently and persistently labored at the cutting edge of electronic technology to open a portal to new worlds in our minds.

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TuneDig Episode 46: Olivia Rodrigo’s “SOUR”

Did you catch one of 2021’s biggest albums, or like us, did you almost overlook it? If you have any expectations of pop music, "SOUR" will likely subvert them. Teenage dream this is not; it’s an exquisitely universal portrait of a weird time to be alive.

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TuneDig Episode 45: Fela Kuti’s “Expensive Shit”

The story of Fela Kuti — one of the most famous people on an *entire continent* passionately struggling to liberate power to more people — is absolutely one worth deeply knowing, regardless of whether you find yourself drawn to Afrobeat or (cringe) “world music.” But once you know it, it’s almost impossible not to fall in love with Fela and Afrika 70 as their revolutionary grooves rewire your brain in magical and meaningful ways.

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TuneDig Episode 44: Meshuggah’s “ObZen”

Meshuggah’s ObZen—an artifact of human creativity pushing the limits of what’s possible—will quite literally make you hear music differently. If you’re looking for a new musical adventure, and especially if you don’t think you like “heavy” or “weird” music, consider this your sign to push past your comfort zone.

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TuneDig Episode 43: mewithoutYou’s “Catch For Us the Foxes”

A misunderstood wise man once said “Let him who seeks continue seeking until he finds.” In our most personal and vulnerable episode yet, we do some seeking through the lens of songs that fill us with the bravery and sincerity to love ourselves and others fully. Dig deep with us as we fish for words about our tiny place in the universe and dance with gratitude for our ability to do so.

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For lifelong headbangers and the musically curious alike, a new podcast from TuneDig is here to push your palette with aggressive, abrasive art. Each short, fast-paced episode offers (1) a new metal, punk, noise, or experimental release we recommend, (2) a related playlist we’ve curated, and (3) a heavy issue to consider and an organization doing something about it. Join us in the void.


TuneDig Episode 41: Miles Davis’s “Bitches Brew”

Let’s be clear: "Bitches Brew" is a challenging record, even to some of the best musicians in the world — but all of them say it’s worth the investment. It’s the kind of trip that, even if we *could* draw a map, it wouldn’t take you there. Let go of the need for meaning and enjoy the ride with us. We can promise you’ll be pleasantly surprised where you end up.

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TuneDig Episode 40: Fiona Apple’s “Tidal”

On the heels of one of 2020's most acclaimed albums — Fiona Apple’s Fetch the Bolt Cutters — we revisited Apple’s debut Tidal and wound up working to extract ourselves from the mostly male gazes that made its reception … much different. We arrive at a question much like writer Jenn Pelly had: “People would constantly prod Fiona on how an 18-year-old could write songs as mature as these ... Why did they not ask instead how she became a genius?”

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TuneDig Episode 39: Death Grips’s “The Money Store”

The modern world is accelerating beyond our control, shaping our reality in ways we can’t yet perceive or understand. Enter Death Grips, an art project capturing the chaotic energy and illustrating the absurdity of our hubris in trying to harmonize the surreal and extremely real — never more perfectly than on 2012’s prescient "The Money Store".

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TuneDig Episode 38: Augustus Pablo’s “King Tubbys Meets Rockers Uptown”

Reggae music is easy to take for granted, but its impact is underappreciated and massive — in the case of dub in particular, everyone from Radiohead to Johnny Rotten to Run-DMC owes it a debt. Augustus Pablo and King Tubby together created what’s regarded as “one of the finest examples of dub ever recorded.” Join us as we dive into the culture, history, and unique engineering experiments that made it possible.

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TuneDig Episode 37: Rihanna’s “ANTI”

By every measure — sales, awards, chart-toppers, global name recognition — Rihanna is objectively as big as the Beatles ever were. In fact, ANTI is so big it’s still on the charts, a record five full years later. Take a closer look with us at “the record you make when you don’t need to sell records”, and get a taste of the true freedom that comes from focusing on your inner voice when faced with insurmountable expectations.

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TuneDig Episode 36: Son House’s “Father of Folk Blues”

All American music traces back to the blues, and deep at the root sits Son House. That the recordings on "Father of Folk Blues" even exist is something of a gray area that cuts to the heart of the great American myth, but wherever you land after hearing these stories, you’ll find that what matters most is what the great Muddy Waters once said of House: “That man was the king.”

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TuneDig Episode 35: Melvins’s “Stoner Witch”

The futility of describing the Melvins has stretched critics in the direction of absurd words like “Dadaist” for nearly 40 years now. They’ve belligerently flogged any attempt to pinpoint their essence simply by being themselves, but "Stoner Witch" remains a reliable mall directory for the Melvins’ vast and wild discography. Grab yourself some pretzel bites.

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TuneDig Episode 34: Dolly Parton’s “Jolene”

We should talk about Dolly the way we talk about Prince. Her extraordinary kindness and unique kitsch both make her universally loved, but what gets left out of the conversation is the very thing that made her famous: the music. Join in as we focus attention on the sonics and songwriting of the low-key masterpiece "Jolene".

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Kyle and Cliff

BONUS TRACK: How We Got Here

We got a bunch of interesting listener feedback in our off-season, and it encouraged us to shed some light on why we do things the way we do ‘em. Also, we reflect on our first writeup, which was ... interesting.

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We're Cliff (right) and Kyle (left). We’re two dudes born and raised in ATL with day jobs in tech and sustainability, respectively.

We met in middle school, and in one way or another, music’s been the thing that’s kept us close for the two decades since — whether it’s sharing and talking about new music (like this podcast, except in our texts or over beers), going to shows, or working with our favorite record stores to help them survive and thrive.

We started TuneDig as a little art project that connects us more deeply ourselves and to the world through the infinite gift of music. We hope you’ll join us for the conversations, let us know what you think, and share discoveries of your own.

More About TuneDig

TuneDig began as a little something called MusicGrid.me, which we created after realizing there was no place online to directly exchange music recommendations with your friends. Our aim was simple: to make rating albums simple, useful, and social. We got some love from places like MashableWiredEvolver.fm, and Hypebot. We managed to foster conversation between music lovers, get thousands of reviews, and meet great people.

Along the way, we realized that record stores were an essential part of the music lovers’ community. After many a conversation about how we could helpfully connect them to the people who loved them, we began helping them leverage technology to create new revenue streams and embrace streaming services without giving up what’s unique to them: expertise and curation. (Long live the counter clerk who knows exactly which record will be the right introduction to jazz fusion!)

TuneDig is our vision to connect music lovers with the music they love, because no matter how much has changed in the way we discover and enjoy music, recommendations from people you trust and respect will always be the best way to find new music you’ll dig. With this podcast, we’re channeling the spirit of trusted curation pioneered by record stores, and bringing you something to take you deeper into music you can love.