Metal Motiv: Metal Motivation Monday | Peace Sells… But Who’s Buying?
Design of inspirational heavy metal lyrics.
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Peace Sells… But Who’s Buying?


About This Song

When doing the research for this band, I jumped headfirst at the thought of designing a poster for Holy Wars… The Punishment Due. That track is hands-down a trash classic. It’s just incredible. However, this project made me look back on how I discovered Megadeth.

The “Peace Sells” album was my first listen to Megadeth (thanks to an older friend that introduced it to me at the time) and it formed my “sound” of the band. This record is raw and aggressive and brash; something about it intrigued me enough to keep listening to it. It’s not a perfect album by far—again, I think Rust in Piece is the bands best—but this album captures the essence of the band. It’s their “Kill ’em All”, even though this is their 2nd album. It’s actually listed in the book, 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die. This album was also the true introduction to the band’s mascot Vic Rattlehead, who embodies the phrase “See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil.”

The title track, Peace Sells… but Who’s Buying?, was the first sarcastic yet intelligent metal song I can remember. It was also their first hit—you might remember the beginning bass line from MTV News back in the day. This song is great because it challenges the status quo and stereotypes misperceptions of this generation. I gravitated toward the “I’m proving you wrong” question/answer verse structure of the song.

The approach I took with this poster was to make it resemble a classic WWII era poster. There were so many great and artistic posters for recruitment, rations, public speaking and military victory, it seemed like a no-brainer to make one about “Peace Sells…”. I think this song is about judging things for yourself and proving others wrong. Just because you see white doves, doesn’t mean they all bring peace.



What do you mean, “I don’t believe in God”?
I talk to him every day.
What do you mean, “I don’t support your system”?
I go to court when I have to.
What do you mean, “I can’t get to work on time”?
I got nothing better to do
And, what do you mean, “I don’t pay my bills”?
Why do you think I’m broke? Huh?

If there’s a new way,
I’ll be the first in line.
But, it better work this time.

What do you mean, “I hurt your feelings”?
I didn’t know you had any feelings.
What do you mean, “I ain’t kind”?
I’m just not your kind.
What do you mean, “I couldn’t be the president of the United States of America”?
Tell me something, it’s still “We the people”, right?

[Chorus: (repeat)]
If there’s a new way
I’ll be the first in line,
But, it better work this time.

Can you put a price on peace?
Peace sells…,
Peace sells…,
Peace sells…,but who’s buying?
Peace sells…,but who’s buying?
Peace sells…,but who’s buying?
Peace sells…,but who’s buying?
[n+1 times more]
No, peace sells…