Nuno Bettencourt Explains The ‘Annoying’ Part Of Tom Morello’s Playing

Recently, during the Best of Blues and Rock Festival in Brazil, Tom Morello joined Extreme on stage to perform Audioslave’s ‘Cochise.’ Before the show, he and the band’s Nuno Bettencourt attended a press conference where they shared insights about each other’s guitar playing.

Bettencourt started the chat by commenting on Morello’s guitar skills and revealing what was ‘underrated’ about it:

“Tom can actually play as well. The thing about Tom that to me gets a little underrated – and pisses me off a little bit, because he tends to pull back, and I want him to do this more; he did it more in the early days – you think that he’s got one of the most iconic, inventive, innovative styles with electronics and making sounds and making it sound like a DJ, but then all of a sudden, he starts really ‘playing’ playing… like, go f-ck yourself, because he’s a dangerous player that way.”

In response, the Rage Against The Machine member praised the guitarist’s performance and technique by saying:

“It’s because I practiced all the Nuno solos! He’s been a huge influence. Combining funky music with heavy music and then musicianship with abandon are things that have been involved in this band [Extreme], and I think in Nuno’s playing from the very start.”

During the joint interview, Bettencourt also talked about Morello’s band. Recalling his first impression of their music, he said:

“It’s funny because when we heard Rage Against the Machine for the first time, we loved it so much that we hated them. We have this saying that Jimmy Page – and I said this to Jimmy Page, I thought Jimmy Page wrote all the great rock ‘n’ roll riffs and threw the rest of us all the scraps, the bones. And that was until I heard Rage Against the Machine.

Every riff was monstrous; it was everything. And the fact that they had a rapper took it to a whole other level of genre and changed the game.”

The recent performance at the festival was not the first time the two musicians worked together. In 2019, they joined Scott Ian in performing the ‘Game of Thrones’ theme on Fender’s custom guitars, with the show’s composer Ramin Djwadi and showrunner D.B. Weiss.