Monday, February 18, 2013

I'm Your Eyes When You Must Steal: On the Ethics of the Young Metallica

Something has been bothering me for quite some time now, and no one has been able to offer me a straight answer on it.  

Note: this is by no means a new controversy.  I'm not even entirely sure it constitutes as a "controversy."

Nonetheless, I offer you the following in the hopes of gaining better clarity on the issue:

Early 1982: Dave Mustaine leaves Panic to join Metallica.

July 1982: Metallica releases the "No Life Til Leather" demo.  It includes a song called "The Mechanix," credited solely to Dave Mustaine.

April 1983: Dave Mustaine is fired from Metallica.  It is rumored that Mustaine asks the members of Metallica not to use his material.  Metallica disputes this claim.

May 1983: Metallica records "Kill 'Em All."

July 1983: "Kill 'Em All" is released in the U.S.  It contains a track entitled "The Four Horsemen."  Dave Mustaine is credited as a co-writer.


Also: "Flashdance....What A Feeling" by Irene Cara hits # 1 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Late 1983: Dave Mustaine forms Megadeth.

May 1985: Megadeth releases "Killing is My Business...And Business Is Good."  In addition to an absolutely terrible title, this album includes the track "Mechanix," credited solely to Dave Mustaine. 

Question # 1: 
Does anyone know what (if any) legal action took place surrounding these three songs recordings?

Question # 2:
Regardless as to how the track was credited, was it unethical for Metallica to release a song that seems to have been mostly crafted by an employee who had been terminated?   

Question # 3:
Assuming that Mustaine's writing credit has assured him of songwriting royalties for "The Four Hoursemen" was it unethical for him to double-dip and re-release the song?

Question # 3a: 
Was it petty?

Question # 4:
Why is this such an overlooked aspect of the Metallica/Megadeth rivalry? 

Question # 5:
Do you think that perhaps Metallica's lawyers prevented this topic from being addressed during Lars' and Dave's little pow-wow in "Some Kind of Monster"? 

Question # 6:
Lars totally couldn't play "The Mechanix" at the intended speed, could he? (Be honest).

Question # 7:
Should Kirk Hammet be ashamed of the fact that he took so little artistic license with another man's guitar solo? (Cue 6:23 mark on The Four Horsemen; approx 3:42 mark for the other two recordings)

Question # 8:
Does anyone know if Mustaine played "Mechanix" on any of the Big 4 dates?  Because that would have been awesome.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Reviews in Bad Taste: Motley Crue in Nine Albums

Bram Teitelman at was kind enough to remember that yesterday was Vince Neil's birthday.  

Personally, I forgot.

He was also kind enough to use this occasion to provide an insightful, funny and thoroughly researched ranking of Motley Crue's best albums. You should read it, because its awesome.

But, personally, I disagree with Bram.  And I felt strongly enough about it to take on the job myself.  


(And since I know most of you won't stick around to read this crap. I did it in descending order.  You're welcome).

# 1. Too Fast for Love

Ooh you're gotta get a big looooove touch!
This record reminds me more than anything else, of Rod Stewart's "Every Picture Tells a Story."


Because, just like "Every Picture," it is fucking killer.  

And, also like "Every Picture," it represents an honest, sometimes rough-around-the-edges account of an artist's best work.  Not the most refined, but the best.

And, finally, just like "Every Picture," the artist(s) who created it were about to cultivate such an outrageously buffonish image that it would soon become nearly impossible to ever ensure the reord would get its due respect.

# 2. Shout at the Devil

We are evil. Your parents will hate us.
Better studio, better gear, better drugs.  (Mostly) better songs.  

All in all, a very solid output, laying a foundation for a fantastic career, enhanced all the more by hiring a crack commando unit to raid John Carpenter and George Miller's wardrobe departments.

# 3. Dr. Feelgood
Remember me how I was, not how I am.
This record has a very large handful of great singles.

You probably remember that the rest is also awesome.  

It isn't.


# 4. Girls Girls Girls

Elektra bought a bike for every good song on the record
On the bright side, the record opens with two of the best songs in the entire Motley Crue catalog.

Move along.  Nothing else to see here.

# 5. Motley Crue

John Corabi: Don't go away mad, just go away
Surprise, Nikki! 

That record you keep trying to forget is better than most of the ones you keep forcing us to remember!

# 6. Generation Swine

Feelin' all alone without a friend, you know you feel like dyin'.
Ladies and gentlemen, the worst record Cheap Trick never recorded.

# 7 Saints of Los Angeles
We are, we are, we are hoping you'll buy this!

I've been told this album is not all that bad.

I do not believe.

 # 8 Theatre of Pain

Home Sweet Holy Crap This is Awful
If you don't care, why should I?

# 9 New Tattoo
This review is only two words.

 Shit sandwich.