Hell in a Handbasket

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This article is about a music album. For the phrase, see to hell in a handbasket.
Hell in a Handbasket
North American cover
Studio album by Meat Loaf
Released September 30, 2011 (Australia)
February 27, 2012 (UK)
March 13, 2012 (US)
Recorded Summer 2011
Genre Hard rock, heavy metal, country rock, hip hop
Length 53:05
Label Legacy
Producer Paul Crook, Lil Jon
Meat Loaf chronology
Hang Cool Teddy Bear
(2010)
Hell in a Handbasket
(2011)
Live in Sydney
(2012)

Hell in a Handbasket is the 12th studio album by Meat Loaf, released September 30, 2011 in Australia and New Zealand, through Legacy Recordings (Sony Music Entertainment). A wider global release followed in early 2012.[1]

Background[edit]

The album was produced by Neverland Express guitarist Paul Crook.[2] Songwriters who had worked on his previous album also made a return, including Gregory Becker and John Paul White ("Let's Be in Love") and Tommy Henriksen (co-author of the digital bonus track "Prize Fight Lover"). Also prominently featured on the album is songwriter Sean McConnell, whose contributions were originally developed for Hang Cool Teddy Bear but wound up being discarded as the album took a different direction creatively (however, he is still thanked in that album's liner notes).[3] The album was released on Legacy Recordings, the catalog division of Sony Music Entertainment, which overseas Meat Loaf's back catalog of releases on the Sony-owned Epic and Arista labels.

Due to the lengthy gaps between releases in various regions, Meat Loaf has intimated in response to public demand that there is still time for longtime collaborator Jim Steinman to make a contribution to the album in its internationally-released form. Meat Loaf concluded by noting "don't rule it out."[4] This was a more specific variation on a previous statement, namely that he would work with Steinman again but that Steinman "doesn't know it yet."[5] Speculation has since occurred as to what the contribution may be. As recently as September 2008, Steinman stated on his website he was creating an album as a promotional tie-in to the forthcoming Bat Out of Hell musical with a working title of Bat Out of Hell: The Climax or The Final at Bat, which would feature "new versions of classic BOOH 1&2 songs, and ALL the brand newest songs, sung by many amazing artists." He hastened to add that there was "NO REASON Meat couldnt [sic] sing these too."[6]

Title[edit]

The title "Hell in a Handbasket" refers to the popular saying that things are going "to hell in a handbasket." According to Meat Loaf, he chose the title because "the world's gone to hell in a handbasket and every day that I listen to the news, I think the handbasket is getting bigger."[7]

Track listings[edit]

Australian/German version[8][edit]

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "All of Me"   Dave Berg 5:17
2. "Fall from Grace"   Gregory Becker/Bobby Huff/Bleu McAuley 3:46
3. "The Giving Tree"   Evan Watson 4:54
4. "Mad Mad World/The Good God Is a Woman and She Don't Like Ugly" (Special appearance by Chuck D) Tom Cochrane/Paul Crook/Carlton Ridenhour 4:05
5. "Party of One"   Dave Kushner/Franky Perez 3:59
6. "Live or Die"   Gregory Becker/Tommy Henriksen/John Paul White 4:27
7. "California Dreamin'" (Duet with Patti Russo) John Phillips/Michelle Phillips 4:05
8. "Another Day"   Wade Bowen/Sean McConnell 5:03
9. "40 Days"   Bill Luther/Justin Weaver 5:23
10. "Our Love and Our Souls" (Duet with Patti Russo) Sean McConnell 4:00
11. "Stand in the Storm" (Special guest appearances from Lil Jon, John Rich and Mark McGrath) Barry Dean/J. Smith/Troy Verges 4:37
12. "Blue Sky"   Sean McConnell 2:57

North American/European version[9][10][11][edit]

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "All of Me"   Dave Berg 5:17
2. "The Giving Tree"   Evan Watson 4:54
3. "Live or Die"   Gregory Becker/Tommy Henriksen/John Paul White 4:27
4. "Blue Sky/Mad Mad World/The Good God Is a Woman and She Don't Like Ugly" (Special appearance by Chuck D) Tom Cochrane/Paul Crook/Sean McConnell/Carlton Ridenhour 4:58
5. "California Dreamin'" (Duet with Patti Russo) John Phillips/Michelle Phillips 4:05
6. "Party of One"   Dave Kushner/Franky Perez 3:59
7. "Another Day"   Wade Bowen/Sean McConnell 5:03
8. "40 Days"   Bill Luther/Justin Weaver 5:23
9. "Our Love and Our Souls" (Duet with Patti Russo) Sean McConnell 4:00
10. "Stand in the Storm" (Special guest appearances from Lil Jon, Trace Adkins and Mark McGrath) Barry Dean/J. Smith/Troy Verges 4:42
11. "Blue Sky"   Sean McConnell 2:57
12. "Fall from Grace"   Gregory Becker/Bobby Huff/Bleu McAuley 3:46

Personnel[edit]

Musicians[edit]

The Neverland Express[edit]

Regular Meat Loaf studio sidemen[edit]

Session musicians[edit]

  • Ginny Luke – violin (track 5)
  • Caitlin Evanson – fiddle (track 6)
  • Glen Duncan – mandolin (track 9)
  • Bruce Bowden – pedal steel (track 11)
  • Jerry Flowers – backing vocals (track 4)

Guest appearances[edit]

Alternate covers[edit]

Singles[edit]

"Stand in the Storm", featuring special guest appearances from Meat Loaf's Celebrity Apprentice teammates Mark McGrath, John Rich, and Lil Jon, was the first promotional single released digitally in May 2011, to benefit their respective charities.[14]

The first physical and second digital single, "All of Me", the album's opening track, was released for download exclusively through iTunes Australia on August 26, 2011.[15]

The album's seventh track, a cover of "California Dreamin'" (originally by The Mamas and The Papas) featuring Patti Russo, has since been released to radio in Australia as of early September 2011.

Tour[edit]

Meat Loaf embarked on the Guilty Pleasure Tour across Australia and New Zealand in October 2011 in support of the album, receiving mixed reviews for his vocal performance. The show in Sydney was recorded for DVD release.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Video on YouTube[dead link]
  2. ^ "Meat Loaf To Work With Lil Jon And Chuck D On New Album". 411mania.com. 2012-05-10. Retrieved 2012-06-27. 
  3. ^ "Meatloaf ''(sic)''". Sean McConnell. Retrieved 2012-06-27. 
  4. ^ "Meat Loaf Responds to Facebook Questions, Vol. 22". Youtube.com. 2011-09-16. Retrieved 2012-06-27. 
  5. ^ "Facebook Q&A: Volume 17". 
  6. ^ "The Rockman Record - LET ME EXPLAIN". Jimsteinman.com. Retrieved 2012-06-27. 
  7. ^ George, Andrew. "Meat Loaf talks hip-hop, news prior to Sands Bethlehem Event Center show". Bethlehem Area News. The Express-Times. Retrieved 25 July 2012. 
  8. ^ "JB Hi-Fi Australia". Jbhifionline.com.au. Retrieved 2012-06-27. 
  9. ^ "Meat Loaf New 2012 Album: "Hell in a Handbasket" Tracklist and Release Date | Music News". Songonlyrics.com. 2012-01-18. Retrieved 2012-06-27. 
  10. ^ "Meat Loaf Announces ‘Hell in a Handbasket’ Tracklist, Art and Release Date". Ultimateclassicrock.com. 2012-01-17. Retrieved 2012-06-27. 
  11. ^ "Legacy Recordings Announces The Stateside Release Of Hell In A Handbasket, The New Full-Length Studio Album". Meat Loaf. Retrieved 2012-06-27. 
  12. ^ Australian release only
  13. ^ North American/European release only
  14. ^ "New Song "Stand In The Storm" Collaboration With John Rich, Lil Jon and Mark McGrath on iTunes Now!". Meatloaf.net. 2011-05-26. Retrieved 2012-06-27. 
  15. ^ "iTunes - Music - All of Me - Single by Meat Loaf". Itunes.apple.com. 2011-08-26. Retrieved 2012-06-27.