We were welcomed to the Target Center by hundreds of police officers in riot gear and clubs drawn. The crowd outside was peaceful, but slightly irritated with the ridiculous police presence. My boys and I decided to walk over one of the enclosed bridges, which go between the buildings in downtown Minneapolis, since we were early. When we returned to the bridge/walkway that entered the Target Center, we saw police officers arrest a young man below us with a bloodied face. On the street, where they arrested him, was a pool of blood.
We finally entered the arena, picked up some shirts, and listened to the rest of the opening act, Anti-Flag. They sucked, by the way. After they removed their crap from the stage, we watched hundreds of fans jump from the reserve seats onto the floor. Security inside was lacking. Each time another fan jumped onto the floor, the crowd cheered. Definitely the loudest crowd that I have heard.
Before Rage hit the stage, we heard loud air raid sirens go off. Then, we could barely see four guys being escorted on stage in the dark. The band was dressed in orange jumpsuits, which looked like Guantanamo Bay style prison outfits, with black hoods over their heads, and appeared to be handcuffed from behind. They were lined up on stage, in front of the crowd, and stood there for a minute, as if waiting for a firing squad. The crowd went nuts! Then, the roadies placed the gear on the band members and walked the drummer to his kit. They immediately went on to open the show with "Bombtrack," with the black hoods on their heads the entire song.
“We’re Rage Against the Machine from Los Angeles, California,” Zack de la Rocha said after the band had changed out of their prison gear and jumped right into playing "Testify." Zack was great at emphasizing and slightly changing the lyrics to what was happening outside the Target Center with: "The War Is Right Outside This Door."
Zack mentioned a few things about the Republican National Convention in St. Paul, but overall, kept his messages brief.
The show ended and we quickly got outside to hopefully avoid any riots. Unfortunately, we were greeted by even more cops in riot gear. They were lining the streets, elbow-to-elbow, with clubs out and had tear gas and pepper spray ready to go. Fortunately, we made it out safe. Afterwards, I read that 102 people were arrested.
The show was one of the most energetic and best shows of my life. The police presence just intensified things more and made it that much more memorable.
Here is the set list:
Bulls on Parade
People of the Sun
Know Your Enemy
Bullet in the Head
Born of a Broken Man
Ashes in the Fall
Calm Like a Bomb
Sleep Now in the Fire
The Internationale (playing in the background)
Killing in the Name of
There are a few conflicting set lists out there that missed Township Rebellion and some mistitled the Katrina Song. I was there and this is correct.