Slave to the Grind

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Slave to the Grind
Studio album by Skid Row
Released June 11, 1991
Recorded 1990–1991 at New River Studios in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and Scream Studios in Studio City, California
Genre Heavy metal
Length 48:41 (Explicit)
50:01 (Clean)
Label Atlantic
Producer Michael Wagener, Dave Sabo
Skid Row chronology
Skid Row
Slave to the Grind
B-Side Ourselves
Singles from Slave to the Grind
  1. "Monkey Business"
    Released: May 1991
  2. "Slave to the Grind"
    Released: June 1991
  3. "Wasted Time"
    Released: October 1991
  4. "In a Darkened Room"
    Released: November 25, 1991
  5. "Quicksand Jesus"
    Released: 1992

Slave to the Grind is Skid Row's second album, released on June 11, 1991. Slave to the Grind is notable for being the first heavy metal album to debut at #1 on the Billboard 200 during the SoundScan era.[1]


Two different versions were released: the original version, and the "clean" (censored) version. The clean version replaced the song "Get the Fuck Out" with the less-offensive "Beggar's Day".

Slave to the Grind marked the band's move towards a heavier sound. The lyrics were more complex, criticizing modern ways of life, authority, politics, drugs, and organized religion, among other topics.

Sebastian Bach's father painted the cover art, which is actually a long mural, continued inside the album's booklet. It is set in the medieval era (inspired by Caravaggio's Burial of St. Lucy (1608)), yet has people using modern technological gadgets. John F. Kennedy is in the crowd.

It was voted Album of the Year in the 1991 Metal Edge Readers' Choice Awards.[2]

Music videos were produced for the five singles "Monkey Business", "Slave to the Grind", "Wasted Time", "In a Darkened Room" and "Quicksand Jesus" all of which feature on the video album No Frills Video. A music video was also made for Psycho Love in 3D which featured on the video album Road Kill.


Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 4.5/5 stars[3]
Chicago Tribune 3.5/4 stars[4]
Entertainment Weekly A−[5]
Robert Christgau (dud)[6]
Rolling Stone 3/5 stars[7]

AllMusic gave 'Slave to the Grind a rating of four and a half out of five stars, and said the album was "one of the best—and heaviest—examples of mainstream hard rock/heavy metal".[3]

Track listing[edit]

Original version[edit]

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Monkey Business"   Rachel Bolan, Dave Sabo 4:20
2. "Slave to the Grind"   Sebastian Bach, Bolan, Sabo 3:31
3. "The Threat"   Bolan, Sabo 3:52
4. "Quicksand Jesus"   Bolan, Sabo 5:26
5. "Psycho Love"   Bolan 3:58
6. "Get the Fuck Out" (Does not appear on clean version) Bolan, Sabo 2:42
7. "Livin' on a Chain Gang"   Bolan, Sabo 4:00
8. "Creepshow"   Bolan, Rob Affuso, Scotti Hill 3:59
9. "In a Darkened Room" (†) Bach, Bolan, Sabo 3:57
10. "Riot Act"   Bolan, Sabo 2:42
11. "Mudkicker"   Bach, Bolan, Hill 3:56
12. "Wasted Time"   Bach, Bolan, Sabo 5:50
13. "Beggar's Day [*]" (Japanese Bonus Track, replaces "Get the Fuck Out" on "Clean Version") Bach, Bolan, Sabo 4:05
14. "Holidays in the Sun [*]" (Japanese Bonus Track, Re-Edition Only) Johnny Rotten, Steve Jones, Paul Cook, Sid Vicious 3:38
15. "Get the Fuck Out [*][Live] "Recorded live at Wembley Stadium 1991"" (Japanese Bonus Track, Re-Edition Only) Bolan, Sabo 5:31
16. "Delivering the Goods [*][Live] "Recorded live in Arizona 1992" (Same version that B-Side Ourselves)" (Japanese Bonus Track, Re-Edition Only) Glenn Tipton, K.K. Downing, Rob Halford 4:52

† Album liner notes incorrectly list the length as 4:57.


Additional personnel
  • Riley J. Connell – assistant engineer
  • George Marino – mastering
  • Michael Wagener – producer, mixing
  • Bob Defrin – art direction
  • Craig Doubet – assistant engineer


Region Certification Sales/shipments
United Kingdom (BPI)[8] Silver 60,000^
United States (RIAA)[9] 2× Platinum 2,000,000^

^shipments figures based on certification alone

Chart performance[edit]

Chart Peak
Australian Albums Chart 3
Austria Albums Chart 16
Canada Albums Chart 8
Japan Albums Chart 3
Norway Albums Chart 12
Swedish Albums Chart 9
Swiss Albums Chart 15
UK Albums Chart[10] 5
U.S. Billboard 200[1] 1


Year Single Chart Position
1991 "Monkey Business" Mainstream Rock Tracks[11] 13
UK Singles Chart[10] 19
"Slave to the Grind" UK Singles Chart 43
"Wasted Time" Billboard Hot 100[12] 88
Mainstream Rock Tracks 30
UK Singles Chart 20
"In a Darkened Room" Switzerland 27


The following songs were written and demoed for the album, not included.


  1. ^ a b Slave to the Grind at AllMusic
  2. ^ Metal Edge, May 1992
  3. ^ a b Huey, Steve. Slave to the Grind at AllMusic. Retrieved June 20, 2011.
  4. ^ Herrmann, Brenda (July 11, 1991). "Skid Row Slave to the Grind (Atlantic)". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved February 21, 2013. 
  5. ^ Garza, Janiss (June 21, 1991). "Slave To the Grind Review". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved February 19, 2013. 
  6. ^ Christgau, Robert. "CG: Skid Row". Retrieved February 19, 2013. 
  7. ^ Fricke, David (August 22, 1991). "Skid Row: Slave To The Grind : Music Reviews". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on October 2, 2007. Retrieved February 19, 2013. 
  8. ^ "British album certifications – Skid Row – Slave to the Grind". British Phonographic Industry.  Enter Slave to the Grind in the field Keywords. Select Title in the field Search by. Select album in the field By Format. Select Silver in the field By Award. Click Search
  9. ^ "American album certifications – Skid Row – Slave to the Grind". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH
  10. ^ a b "Skid Row - Full Official Chart History". Official Charts Company. Official Charts Company. Retrieved 21 January 2016. 
  11. ^ Slave to the Grind at AllMusic
  12. ^ Billboard-singles Slave to the Grind at AllMusic
Preceded by
Niggaz4Life by N.W.A
Billboard 200 number-one album
June 29 - July 5, 1991
Succeeded by
For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge by Van Halen