Circa 2001, producer Rick Rubin came up with the idea to combine a band in need of a singer with the frontman of a then-broken up grunge institution who had put out an ambivalently received solo record, and it looked on paper like a brilliant idea. A single rehearsal solidified it, and Audioslave was born. Word leaked that former Soundgarden vocalist Chris Cornell would be standing at the mic with the core of Rage Against the Machine behind him and the news was met with resounding excitement.

Initially derailed by bitterness over their individual managers clamoring for the biggest piece of the financial pie and a potentially devastating leak of 13 in-progress tracks, the journey of Audioslave could’ve been a relatively short one. Thankfully, cooler - and artistic - heads prevailed among Cornell, guitarist Tom Morello, drummer Brad Wilk and bassist Tim Commerford, erasing any lingering sense that the "don’t-call-us-a-supergroup" supergroup was nothing more than a concept fabricated for a cash grab. November 2002 saw the self-titled album hit shelves with a knockabout quality lead single, “Cochise,” instantly resonating with fans of both acts, while radio-ready hits in waiting “Like a Stone” and “I Am the Highway” drew in a brand new audience.

Touring relentlessly for two years, by the time of their 2005 sophomore album, Out of Exile, Audioslave had a developed a solid fanbase, separate from either of their previous bands. Unfortunately, the often nefarious business side of things crept in again, and a frustrated Cornell split in early 2007. He would rejoin his former bandmates in January 2017 at the Anti-Inaugural Ball to perform three songs.

Audioslave may have broken up after just five years of being a band, but they ended up with three impressive studio LPs and one heavily shared collection of demos. How do they all rank alongside one another? Check below to find out.

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