Question Of The Week: Off The Beaten Bonus Track
Hey everybody it’s already Friday! But that doesn’t mean we’ve sobered up from our long celebration of America’s Labor Day last weekend. Yeah, we’re kinda tapering off our buzz but, alas, we shall soon start fresh for this weekend’s mischief, so there’s just a small window of functionality during which we’ve delegated duties for today’s Question Of The Week to an awesome MS reader! You guys think up the best questions anyway! Submit them on our MetalSucks ficebook and twetter k?
Today’s QOTW is inspired by the awesome MS reader known as Mouseporn. Good job dude! U jam!
Is there such thing as an awesome bonus track?
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Released in the infancy of the compact disc format, two awesome albums were rescued by a bonus track: The Cult’s Sonic Temple ends with the kinda ramshackle, repetitive “Wake Up Time For Freedom” but is followed by the at-least great bonus track “Medicine Train,” a romp about getting super-high and staying that way. Even perfecter is “Ball And Chain” on the first Badlands CD. That album’s real closer, too, is tiresome and plodding, but from its ashes rises “Ball” with that awesome bridge and holy donuts Jake E. Lee is scary.
DAVID LEE ROTHMUND
Lamb Of God are the masters of the bonus track. Usually they’re the best songs on the fucking album. Let’s see here. “Nippon” from New American Gospel. “Another Nail for Your Coffin” from Ashes Of The Wake. “Condemn the Hive” from Wrath. And my favorite(s), “Digital Sands” (below) and “Bury Me Under The Sun” from Resolution. I mean, aside from Sacrament, Lamb Of God is always on point — riffs, drumming, vocals, production, everything. But something about their bonus tracks is just 110% Lamb Of God, like they’re forced into a box of expectation for their regular tracks, so they truly express themselves with the bonuses for le tru fans. Hot tip to Lamb of God: Write an album of all bonus tracks.
The only one that comes to mind is “Hell Night,” the secret song on American Psycho by The Misfits. I’m a big believer in those two Michael Graves-fronted Misfits albums; they swing like motherfuckers and have that great old horror movie feel to them. “Hell Night” comes at the end of “Don’t Open Til Doomsday” — 5:38 in on the track, presented below on its own — and it’s basically the song I wish had been played at my prom. It makes me want to hand-jive, every time. You remember the hand-jive, right? Clap-clap wave-wave fist-fist thumb-thumb pat-pat! BORN TO HAND JIVE, BABY!
Because of my fandom for Lilton Waynebough (AKA Lil’ Wayne), I have an affection for bonus tracks; he’s so song oriented that his albums are overlong and all over the place. But that gives credence to his Special Edition add-ons; often they’re better than half the songs he chose to include. Likewise, Gojira‘s L’Enfant Sauvage, as fantastic as it is, is a very song-oriented album. It may be no coincidence that the two bonus jams on Sauvage‘s special edition (the one everyone has anyway) are just as good as the tracks before them. I’ve either skipped or labored through “The Fall” to get to the nasty Morbid Angel-style slams of “This Emptiness” (below). The proggy weight of “Last Creation” is great, too. They make the end of the album proper into some skippable filler.
W.A.S.P.‘s “Animal (Fuck Like a Beast)” was intended for their 1984 debut, but the song is so badass that Real America couldn’t handle it. So one of the greatest songs of all time (metal or otherwise) was added as a bonus track to the album’s 1997 reissue, leading off the record as it should have in ’84. No offense to “I Wanna Be Somebody,” a classic in its own right, but “Animal” is W.A.S.P.’s defining song. It’s the “Your Pretty Face Is Going To Hell” of the ’80s with wall-to-wall energy of carnal lust. And there hasn’t been a song like it since. Lay your ass to the sheets and turn it up.