Killing In The Name chords by Rage Against The Machine


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Killing In The Name | Chords + Lyrics


Intro

||: D5 :|| x4
||: bass riff D (Eb swell) :|| x4
||: Riff 1 :|| x8
||: D Eb :|| x4

| N.C |
Killing in the name of.

||: Big Verse riff (D blues scale, 9th + maj 3r) :|| x4

Verse 1

||: Muted Verse riff :||
||: Some of those that work forces, are the same that burn crosses :|| x3
Some of those that work forces, you are the same that burn crosses.

Pre-chorus A 1

||: Pre chorus A :||
Ugh! Killing in the name of, killing in the name of.

Pre-chorus B 1

||: Pre chorus B :||
||: Now you do what they told ya :|| x4
||: And now you do what they told ya :|| x4
||: But now you do what they told ya :|| x4

Chorus 1

||: Chorus Riff :||
Those who died are justified, for wearing the badge, they’re your chosen whites.
You justify those that died, by wearing the badge, they’re your chosen whites.
Those who died are justified, for wearing the badge, they’re your chosen whites.
You justify those who died, for wearing the badge, they’re your chosen whites.

Verse 2

||: Muted Verse riff :|| Muted riff variation |
||: Some of those that work forces, are the same that burn crosses :|| x3
Some of those that work forces, you are the same that burn crosses.

Pre-chorus A 2

||: Pre chorus A :||
Ugh! Killing in the name of, killing in the name of.

Pre-chorus B 2

||: Pre chorus B :||
||: Now you do what they told ya :|| x4
And now you do what they told ya (Now you’re under control).
Now you do what they told ya (Now you’re under control).
||: And now you do what they told ya (Now you’re under control) :|| x6

Chorus 2

||: Chorus Riff :||
Those who died are justified, for wearing the badge, they’re your chosen whites.
You justify those that died, by wearing the badge, they’re your chosen whites.
Those who died are justified, for wearing the badge, they’re your chosen whites.
You justify those who died, for wearing the badge, they’re your chosen whites.

Solo

||: Chorus Riff :||
Solo D minor blues scale
(Come on! Ugh! Yea! Come On! Ugh!)

Outro Chorus

||: Noise! :||
||: Fuck you, I won’t do what you tell me :|| x8
||: Chorus Riff :||
||: Fuck you, I won’t do what you tell me :|| x8

End

||: Outro Dm riff :||
Motherfucker, Ugh!


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Killing In The Name guitar lesson riffs

Since the song doesn’t have chords, we can’t really analyze a chord progression, instead, let’s look at what intervals each riff uses.

All riffs are best seen as using a D minor pentatonic framework, with added notes. By studying the added notes, we can understand the harmonic landscape of Killing IN The Name Of.

Intro

This is just A D5 since the guitar is tuned down to a drop D, you can play all the way from string 6, including string 5 (A is the 5th of D)

After four bars of this, pause, let the bass take over, and then, play an Eb using the volume knob to swell.

Riff 1

This riff is actually in Dorian, the intervals are 6th and b7, followed by 9th and m3rd. No other scale has these notes.

At the end of the section, bend from m3rd to major 3rd.

Big Verse riff/Muted Verse riff

Best to think of this riff as a D Minor Pentatonic with an added major 3rd and 9th.

Muted Verse variation

The quick run at the end is the Conspirian scale (Minor Pentatonic, add b5 and b7).

Pre Chorus A

Think of this as a D Minor Pentatonic with a chromatic descending line from 6b65th. Finish off with a C5.

Pre Chorus B

Octave D, octave D with scratches, go up an octave higher.

Chorus

No extra notes, just the D Minor Pentatonic

Solo

The riff is the chorus, and the solo’s notes are mainly the D Minor Pentatonic, at the end, we add the 9th and b5.

Outro

During the outro, we move away from our D5 power chord and D Minor Pentatonic riffs and just play a Dm chord in an Am shape.


Killing in the Name is a protest song about the L.A.P.D and Simon Cowell!

Killing in the Name was Rage Against The Machine’s first single and has become the band’s signature song.

Tom Morello came up with the riff, which is in drop D, during a guitar lesson. The next day, at band practice, the band finished the song together.

Lyrically, Killing In The Name is a protest song against the L.A.P.D., claiming that some of the police are members of the KKK.

Released in 1992, this was the first single from the debut album. The single reached the number #1 spot in the U.K., not in ’92, but 18 years later as a protest. This time, not against the L.A.P.D, but against Simon Cowell’s X-factor single!

People downloaded it more times than the winner’s single in order to ensure it didn’t reach #1.

The video guitar lesson demonstrates the different riffs of Killing In The Name, below you find the lyrics with the various riffs outlined. Killing In The Name doesn’t have chords as such, simply copy what Rory plays in the video above.


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