Behind this collaboration between Rage Against the Machine and Wacko Maria lies a deep meaning and story. There are many different pieces of clothing in the current age, whether it be expensive, cheap, rare, or heavily discussed collaborations. However, the most important thing is that the clothes have meaning. Things that have stories and meaning have value worth more than money and refuse to be weathered by time.

“GUILTY PARTIES”. This word is well known amongst all who have come across Wacko Maria. It frequently appears as a graphic rather than a brand logo, and yet is a keyword synonymous with the brand. In fact, this is the key thread that connects the brand to Rage Against the Machine.

Rage Against the Machine was formed in Los Angeles in 1991. Blending rock and hip hop with a message of political thought, the band captivated fans worldwide with their distinctive sound since their debut. Influenced by the philosophy of Malcom X, Che Guevara, Martin Luther King Jr. and others, they have performed anti-war live performances and remain active beyond the realm of music. The youth that was in tune with the culture at the time is bound to have been affected by their music in the 90s. Amongst those fascinated by the band was Wacko Maria’s designer Atsuhiko Mori. Just as he said, “Ever since I started the brand, I’ve always wanted to collaborate with them,” this collaboration has been a long-cherished desire.

If you’re an avid fan of Rage Against the Machine, you may have already noticed. Flipping through their CD booklets will lead you to the staff credit page where you’ll find a page that introduces the band members. Written there are the words, “GUILTY PARTIES”. When translated to Japanese, these words mean “accomplice”. Rage described their band members and staff as a family of accomplices who transmitted a legitimate antithesis to the world. Inspired by the spirit and ethos of the phrase, Mori has used “GUILTY PARTIES” as a way to unite those who share the same will.

After dissolving in 2000 and reuniting again in 2007, the band was suspended again after 2011. However, Rage Against the Machine is set to be revived once again in 2020, with some speculating that the revival is correlated with the 2020 presidential election. Surely this is no coincidence, as their activities and political messages are one in the same. It is possible that the strength of Wacko Maria’s thoughts was able to bring about this collaboration at such a memorable time.

Through collaborations within fashion, people are able to come in contact with cultures that they never knew about before. This ability to travel back and forth between culture remains one of the lasting appeals of fashion. Even if you are not a part of the real-time generation that experienced Rage’s music in the 90s they want you to take this opportunity to enjoy Rage’s music today. From their screams to their energy, the essence of street lies in the spirit of their work. They want to share this culture that they enjoy so much and hope that you get to meet this music that transcends generations. This is the desire of Wacko Maria and Mori’s life work.

Wacko Maria’s collaborations are always born of genuine respect and pure love for the work of their partners. None of the collaborations are ever about generating hype for a headline collaboration. In that sense, we’d like you to revisit Wacko Maria’s clothes. It is by no means the delicate clothing made by a luxury maison. However, all the clothes they make smell of their favorite music and art. There shouldn’t be a brand like them. And yet they exist. Wacko Maria’s clothes have meaning and wearing them makes you an accomplice of theirs that refuses to run with the status quo and holds their own.

This article is included in

Silver N°7 Spring 2020

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