Morello, Tankian taking Justice on road


NEW YORK -- Axis of Justice principals Tom Morello and Serj Tankian are taking their show on the road in this election year.

Morello said that the Justice Tour 2008, which is slated to begin in the spring and continue sporadically through the year, will feature a variety of artists playing in cities around the country to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Declaration of Human Rights, and to encourage participation in grass roots and national political and social causes.

The dates, locations and participating artists are still being finalized, but Morello said an announcement could come as early as next week. The first run will likely visit six cities from mid-April to early May. "The idea was to do a short version of it, have it be wonderful and successful and then do different runs throughout the year," said Morello, who will be performing at the shows as his protest-singing alter ego the Nightwatchman. "It's a big undertaking."

Morello describes the goal of the events as "musicians, fans of music and grass roots activist organizations working together to fight for social justice. We tend to do that and have a great time, too. It'll be a cool variety of musicians going to different places and not only playing shows. It will benefit specific good causes, whether it's supporting anti-war efforts or supporting Iraq Veterans Against the War or repairing destroyed New Orleans."

In addition to the concerts, Morello -- who will also be playing summer festival dates with the reunited Rage Against the Machine -- said that a second day in each city will be devoted to "kind of like an activist workshop for fans and musicians. And the other day we're gonna play a kick-ass show."

Morello, meanwhile, plans on kicking some ass at next week's South by Southwest Music + Media Conference. He'll perform a Nightwatchman showcase on Wednesday and then participate in an all-star concert celebrating the film "Body of War," whose soundtrack features the Nightwatchman track "Battle Hymns."