Undisputed Attitude

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Undisputed Attitude
Compilation album of cover tracks by Slayer
Released May 28, 1996 (1996-05-28)
Recorded January 1996 at Capital Studios in Los Angeles; February 1996 at Hollywood Sound in Hollywood
Genre Thrash metal
Length 33:01
Label American
Producer Rick Rubin (exec.)
Dave Sardy
Slayer
Slayer chronology
Divine Intervention
(1994)
Undisputed Attitude
(1996)
Diabolus in Musica
(1998)

Undisputed Attitude is a 1996 album by American thrash metal band Slayer. The album consists almost entirely of punk covers of bands including Minor Threat, T.S.O.L., D.R.I. and The Stooges. Two songs written by guitarist Jeff Hanneman in 1984 and 1985 for a side project called Pap Smear are included, while the closing song entitled "Gemini" is a Slayer original.

Released on May 28, 1996 through American Recordings, Undisputed Attitude peaked at number 34 on the Billboard 200.

Recording[edit]

Undisputed Attitude was recorded at Capital Studios in Los Angeles, California with producer Dave Sardy, while Reign in Blood producer Rick Rubin served as executive producer. Recorded in three to four weeks, the album was largely the brainchild of guitarist Kerry King, who stated that the songs chosen were from highly influential bands who "made Slayer what it is".[1][2] The album was initially to feature material from classic heavy metal artists such as Judas Priest, UFO, and Deep Purple.[2] However, after several rehearsals "things didn't pan out" according to King, so the band instead elected to cover punk songs.[1]

Slayer considered covering 1960s psychedelic rock band The Doors as they were an influence to vocalist and bassist Tom Araya. When asked which track they considered recording, Araya responded, "Maybe 'When the Music's Over', 'Five to One', something like that."[2] A cover of Black Flag's "Rise Above" was suggested by Rubin, although was shelved after the band was not sure how to arrange it musically.[1]

Guitarist Jeff Hanneman had written four unreleased songs in 1984–1985 while in the side project Pap Smear with Slayer drummer Dave Lombardo and Suicidal Tendencies guitarist Rocky George. The band chose the best two, namely "Ddamm (Drunk Drivers Against Mad Mothers)" and "Can't Stand You".[3][4] "Gemini" was written by King and Araya several months before entering the recording studio. King asserts it is the only Slayer song on the album.[1] The song begins as a sludge/doom number, before becoming a more typical Slayer song.[5]

The band's cover of Minor Threat's "Guilty of Being White" raised questions about a possible message of white supremacy. The controversy involved the changing of the refrain "guilty of being white" to "guilty of being right", at the song's ending. This incensed Minor Threat frontman Ian MacKaye, who stated "that is so offensive to me".[6] King said the lyric was altered for "tongue-in-cheek" humor, saying that the band thought racism was "ridiculous" at the time.[1]

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 2.5/5 stars[5]
CMJ mixed[7]
Entertainment Weekly C−[8]
NME 7/10[9]
Rolling Stone 3/5 stars[10]

Undisputed Attitude was released on May 28, 1996, and peaked at number 34 on the Billboard 200 album chart.[11] Paul Kott of AllMusic commented that "Undisputed Attitude, while not perfect, is a fitting tribute to the bands that inspired Slayer to break from the traditional metal mold."[5] Sandy Masuo of Rolling Stone reasoned: "some punk purists will undoubtedly cry foul, but when the dust settles it's hard to argue with Slayer's mettle."[10] Entertainment Weekly's Chuck Eddy dubbed Slayer's cover interpretations "generic hardcore-punk", and observed that the group "seem to think that playing as fast and rigidly as possible makes for harder rock -- but it's just lazy shtick."[8]

Reviewing 2003 Slayer box set Soundtrack to the Apocalypse, Adrien Begrand of PopMatters dismissed the effort as "easily the weakest album in the Slayer catalogue",[12] while Westword Online's Michael Roberts dubbed the record their "biggest mistake."[13] Araya has since stated that he "knew it wouldn't do very well, people want to hear Slayer! The real die-hards picked up on it and that was expected."[2]

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Writer(s) Original artist Length
1. "Disintegration/Free Money"   Eric Mastrokalos, Brett Dodwell, Roy Hansen Verbal Abuse 1:41
2. "Verbal Abuse/Leeches"   Mastrokalos, Dodwell, Hansen Verbal Abuse 1:58
3. "Abolish Government/Superficial Love"   Jack Grisham, Ron Emory, Mike Roche, Todd Barnes T.S.O.L. 1:48
4. "Can't Stand You"   Jeff Hanneman Pap Smear 1:27
5. "DDAMM (Drunk Drivers Against Mad Mothers)"   Jeff Hanneman Pap Smear 1:01
6. "Guilty of Being White"   Ian MacKaye Minor Threat 1:07
7. "I Hate You"   Mastrokalos, Dodwell, Hansen Verbal Abuse 2:16
8. "Filler/I Don't Want to Hear It"   MacKaye, Lyle Preslar, Brian Baker, Jeff Nelson Minor Threat 2:28
9. "Spiritual Law"   Casey Royer, Rikk Agnew, John Calabro D.I. 3:00
10. "Mr. Freeze"   Kyle Toucher Dr. Know 2:24
11. "Violent Pacification"   Spike Cassidy, Kurt Brecht D.R.I. 2:38
12. "Richard Hung Himself"   Royer, Fred Traccone D.I. 3:22
13. "I'm Gonna Be Your God" ("I Wanna Be Your Dog") James Osterberg, Ron Asheton, Scott Asheton, David Alexander The Stooges 2:58
14. "Gemini"   Kerry King, Tom Araya Slayer 4:53
Total length:
33:01

European edition[edit]

Tracks 1-9 remain the same.

No. Title Writer(s) Original artist Length
10. "Sick Boy"   Colin "Jock" Blyth, Colin Abrahall, Ross Lomas G.B.H. 2:14
11. "Mr. Freeze"   Toucher Dr. Know 2:24
12. "Violent Pacification"   Cassidy, Brecht D.R.I. 2:38
13. "Richard Hung Himself"   Royer, Fred "Lie, Cheat & Steal" Traccone D.I. 3:22
14. "I'm Gonna Be Your God" ("I Wanna Be Your Dog") Osterberg, Asheton, Asheton, Alexander The Stooges 2:58
15. "Gemini"   Araya Slayer 4:53
Total length:
35:15

Japanese edition[edit]

Tracks 1-9 remain the same.

No. Title Writer(s) Original artist Length
10. "Sick Boy"   Blyth, Abrahall, Lomas G.B.H. 2:14
11. "Mr. Freeze"   Toucher Dr. Know 2:24
12. "Violent Pacification"   Cassidy, Brecht D.R.I. 2:38
13. "Memories of Tomorrow"   Mike Muir, Louiche Mayorga Suicidal Tendencies 0:54
14. "Richard Hung Himself"   Royer, Fred Traccone D.I. 3:22
15. "I'm Gonna Be Your God" ("I Wanna Be Your Dog") Osterberg, Asheton, Asheton, Alexander The Stooges 2:58
16. "Gemini"   Araya Slayer 4:53
Total length:
36:09

Personnel[edit]

  • Ralph Cacciurri; Bryan Davis; Jim Giddens; Bill Smith – assistant engineers
  • Stephen Marcussen – mastering
  • Wes Benscoter – artwork, illustrations
  • Dennis Keeley – photography
  • Michael Lavine – front cover photo, photography
  • Dirk Walter – art direction, design

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e "Audio interview with Kerry King Part 1 and 2". toazted.com. Archived from the original on 2008-01-30. Retrieved 2007-12-13. 
  2. ^ a b c d "Midwest Metal Magazine interview with Tom Araya". Midwestmetalmagazine.com. Archived from the original on 2008-12-08. Retrieved 2007-12-13. 
  3. ^ "About". Slayer.net. Archived from the original on 2007-03-11. Retrieved 2007-03-17. 
  4. ^ Davis, Brian (2004-07-26). "A Rare Interview with Slayer Shredder Hanneman, Gripping Firmly onto the Reigns of Metal". Knac.com. Retrieved 2007-03-17. 
  5. ^ a b c Kott, Paul. "Undisputed Attitude". AllMusic. Retrieved 2007-03-18. 
  6. ^ Blush, Steven, American Hardcore: A Tribal History (New York: Feral House, 2001), "Guilty of Being White", in an interview with Ian MacKaye, 30–31.
  7. ^ Lien, James (July 1996). "Review of Undisputed Attitude". College Music Journal (35): 43. 
  8. ^ a b Eddy, Chuck (1996-06-21). "Undisputed Attitude Review". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2007-12-13. 
  9. ^ "Slayer - Undisputed Attitude CD Album". CD Universe. Retrieved 2012-12-01. 
  10. ^ a b Masuo, Sandy (1996-05-30). "Slayer: Undisputed Attitude : Music Reviews". Rolling Stone: 49. Archived from the original on 2007-08-21. Retrieved 2007-03-18. 
  11. ^ "Slayer's album chart history". Billboard.com. Archived from the original on 2007-09-30. Retrieved 2007-03-17. 
  12. ^ Begrand, Adrien (2004-01-23). "The Devil in Music". PopMatters.com. Retrieved 2007-03-17. 
  13. ^ Roberts, Michael (August 2000). "Westworld Online interview with Kerry King". SlayerSaves.com. Archived from the original on 2006-10-18. Retrieved 2007-12-20. 
  14. ^ "Drummer JON DETTE: 'To Be Part Of The SLAYER History Again Is Awesome". Retrieved 2013-02-25.