Skid Row’s Slave to the Grind Turns 30

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Skid Row’s Slave to the Grind Turns 30

skid row
Skid Row. Photo by Mick Hutson/Redferns/Getty Images. 

We’re remembering Skid Row’s second studio album, Slave to the Grind which celebrates its 30th anniversary this month. 


slave to the grind

Released in June 1991, Slave to the Grind doubled down on the heaviness of the band’s wildly successful 1989 self-titled debut album – with the hits “18 and Life,” “I Remember You” and “Youth Gone Wild” – delivering a hard, fast jolt of power, with razor-sharp lyrics tackling themes like modern life, authority, politics, drugs, and religion. The tunes, penned mostly by bassist Rachel Bolan and guitarist Dave "Snake" Sao, exude attitude and grit. The devastating heavy title track, bordering on speed metal, and riff-driven singalongs are balanced with melodic acoustic moments and an all-out power ballad of which they are kings. 

"I think a lot of people expected us to become formulaic with the way we approached the first record and we had no interest in doing that," Rachel Bolan told The Aquarian in 2015. "And I’m so proud of all of us for being on the same page with that. I’m not saying that it would have been easy from the creative standpoint to sort of go along the lines of the first record because it had some pretty big songs as far as radio goes, but we were in a different mindset. We had gone from barely leaving the state of New Jersey to seeing the world that very few people are privileged with."

Slave to the Grind was the first heavy metal album to chart at number one on the Billboard 200 and in 1998, we certified platinum in the U.S. The album produced five monster singles, “Monkey Business,” “Slave to the Grind,” “Wasted Time,” “In a Darkened Room” and “Quicksand Jesus.” Relive the videos below! 

Skid Row | “Monkey Business”

Skid Row | “Slave to the Grind” 

Skid Row | “Wasted Time”

Skid Row | “In A Darkened Room”

Skid Row | “Quicksand Jesus” 

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