Tom Morello Calls Springsteen Tour ‘A Great Challenge,’ Starts New Nightwatchman Album

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Kevin Winter/Getty Images

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Tom Morello was one of the many big-name musicians to take part in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony’s epic closing jam last week (April 19), alongside Rush, Heart, John Fogerty, Chuck D of Public Enemy, Chris Cornell of Soundgarden, and Dave Grohl and Taylor Hawkins of the Foo Fighters. He told Radio.com that he was going straight from the Rock Hall induction jam to the studio, where he’s recording his next solo album, his fourth under The Nightwatchman name.

“There will be a new Nightwatchman record,” he said. “I start as soon as I get home tonight.”

He says that his other band, Street Sweeper Social Club, is also still an ongoing concern, though there are no plans to record right now.

“I love the band,” he said. “But, I got a couple of little babies, and I’ve got a lot of rock to do on my own. But there will be more Street Sweeper projects in the future.”

Morello recently spent a few weeks on the road with Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band, filling in for guitarist Steven Van Zandt for their Australian tour while Van Zandt shot his TV show, Lilyhammer. Morello has been a frequent jam partner for Springsteen and the E Street Band in performances through the years.

“It was a great challenge and it was an awesome time,” Morello said of the experience. “I played 78 songs over 10 shows. I’ve never played 78 songs in my entire life – if you combine the Rage Against The Machine, Audioslave and my high school bands catalogs, it’s less (songs) than that. It was a great challenge!”

Speaking of Rage, we asked him about the new Black Sabbath album, 13, which features his former Rage and Audioslave bandmate, Brad Wilk, on drums.

“It’s gonna be awesome,” he said. “You take one of the most awesome bands of all time, and you add one of the most awesome drummers of all time, and you take a handsome producer like Rick Rubin… and it can’t be anything but awesome and handsome!”

As for Thursday night’s Rock Hall inductees, Morello had a bit to say about them as well.

“Rush is 0ne of my favorite rock bands of all time,” he said. “They are about as good as anyone has ever played their instruments. I’ve spent a tremendous amount of American money on that Canadian band.”

As for the induction of Public Enemy, Morello noted that he’s a huge fan.

“They were such a big part of my musical and political upbringing. I would say not only should they be inducted in their first year of eligibility [an artist is eligible 25 years after their first release; read more about the induction process here, they could have been inducted the year  (1988′s) It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us Back came out. Skip the whole induction process!”

Read more of our coverage of the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Induction ceremony here, and tune in to the broadcast of the induction ceremony on May 18 at 9 p.m. ET on HBO.

Brian Ives, Radio.com

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