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Radio station staff play Rage Against The Machine on a loop for twelve hours

By | Published on Thursday 30 June 2022

Rage Against The Machine

Disgruntled staff at a Canadian radio station took control of the airwaves and played Rage Against The Machine’s ‘Killing In The Name’ on repeat for several hours yesterday. The move was seemingly a protest after management fired a number of presenters.

Morning show hosts on Vancouver’s Kiss Radio 104.9FM Kevin Lim and Sonia Sidhu announced their departure on Tuesday, saying in a statement: “Kiss is changing and unfortunately we were informed that we won’t be part of this new chapter. Although this comes with mixed emotions, we want to express one overwhelming feeling: gratitude”.

Later the same day, afternoon host Tara Jean Stevens also announced that she was leaving the station, saying: “A special announcement! I’ve officially enjoyed my last show on Kiss Radio”.

The following morning, reportedly at 6am, the station began broadcasting the slightly sweary ‘Killing In The Name’ uncensored on a loop. A man who only gave his name as Apollo occasionally broke up the broadcast by stopping to take song requests from listeners, which were then ignored in favour of hitting play on the Rage Against The Machine track again.

‘Apollo’ later told The Guardian that the song was already playing on a loop when he arrived at the station yesterday morning, but he acknowledged that, by carrying it on, he might be in trouble with his bosses.

After twelve hours, control was wrestled back and the station began broadcasting its usual playlist. But will that be its ‘usual’ playlist for long? While many celebrated the big protest, others speculated that it was actually a stunt to announce a shift from pop to alternative rock at the station. If it is, there has been no confirmation of that so far.

‘Killing In The Name’, of course, was originally written to promote police brutality. In 2009, it was used to protest ‘X Factor’ winners always getting to Christmas number one. Now it’s being used to protest radio presenters being fired, or possibly just for a laugh. So, you could argue that it’s lost some of its power over the last 30 years.