During my previous Week-Of-Thrash listening a thought occurred to me; why did so many Thrash bands have a cover song on their album. Not even as bonus tracks or for compilations but just in the middle of their album.
Led Zeppelin got covered by both Dark Angel and Nuclear Assault, again mid-album. Sodom covered Motorhead. Testament covered Areosmith, Death Angel covered Kiss, Heathen covered Free and Rainbow and even Slayer covered Judas Priest (which, fun fact, on my first few years of listening I didn’t know was a cover and considered my favourite Slayer song).
Megadeth covered Nancy Sinatra and Willy Dixon and even went so far as to cover The Sex Pistols and release that as a single and video.
Black Sabbath got covered by Exhorder and Sacred Reich on popular releases. All of these aforementioned ones are mid-album, not even as bonus tracks or b-sides (although that happened too as normal, as Kreator would do with Raven and Sodom would with Tank… and Exodus would with AC/DC, Sepultura would with Black Sabbath and Celtic Frost).
Anthrax covered Alice Cooper, Trust and Joe Jackson and in so doing produced some of their biggest hits which take precedence over their own compositions on live sets and compilation albums. They did this without getting the cover-band stigma insults that Quiet Riot earned with less famous covers overall than that.
Exodus covered bloody ‘Low Rider’ for goodness sake! EXODUS! On the middle of the furious Fabulous Disaster album of all things!
Other bands like Overkill also had cover songs mid album (‘Frankenstein’) or as the title of a whole EP (‘Fuck You’).
What was it with all these bands all at the same time putting covers out in the middle of albums? You can hardly imagine Testament or Slayer doing it today. B sides, compilation albums, movie soundtrack contributions (‘No More Mr Nice Guy’ for example) and bonus tracks are one thing…Garage Inc was one thing… but its odd that so many happened at once in the middle of original studio albums.