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"I've never seen Chris so excited and that's echoed from Brad, Tom and Tim. They think this is the best work of their careers."
——Jim Guerinot
CORNELL BECOMES OFFICIALLY
EN-RAGED
Former Soundgarden Frontman, Rage Members Ready To Head Into Studio
After months and months of speculation and gossip and whatnot, the most anticipated union in rock has finally been confirmed. Former Soundgarden frontman Chris Cornell has officially linked up with three-quarters of Rage Against The Machine, according to The Los Angeles Times.

OK, OK, most of us figured it was a done deal since we first heard that the four had hooked up for an informal jam. But we suppose it doesn’t become officially official until a "reputable" news source publishes the news.

Rage manager Peter Mensch and Cornell manager Jim Guerinot confirm that the musicians have written 20 songs together and will begin recording an album next week with producer Rick Rubin. According to the Times, the new band will depart from the ultra-political rap-rock that Rage became known for, opting instead for more song-oriented compositions with a hard-rock edge.

Originally, many speculated that Cornell, guitarist Tom Morello, bassist Tim Commerford and drummer Brad Wilk were just getting together as a possible side project. But Mensch insists that the group is in it for more than just a one-off opportunity.

"Until the boat founders on the shoals, this is as permanent as anything," Mensch said.

As expected, the biggest headache with the new group—which will NOT be known as Sound Against The Machine or Rage Garden—will be just who will put out the album: Epic (Rage’s label) or Interscope (Cornell’s label).

Although labels' representatives would not comment, the plan apparently being favored would give Epic the release of the band's debut, with the group's second on Interscope. An alternative option reportedly had been to give one label U.S. rights and the other international.

Also dicey is the question of the management of the group. It appears that New York-based Q Prime, co-run by Mensch and Cliff Burnstein (who manage Metallica, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Tool and Stone Temple Pilots, among others) will co-manage along with Laguna Beach-based Guerinot (who handles the Offspring, No Doubt, Social Distortion), according to the Times.

Despite the oddness of the coupling of the two management firms, both sides are—like most rock fans—enthusiastic about the new band.

"Both of these groups of individual artists are more excited about this than at any other point in their career," said Guerinot. "I've never seen Chris so excited and that's echoed from Brad, Tom and Tim. They think this is the best work of their careers. The rest of this [business] stuff is just noise that will be worked out. I can't tell you what it was like hearing them together."

Mensch added, "I'm thrilled to [expletive] bits."

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