Mama Said Knock You Out

Album: The Wrong Side of Heaven and the Righteous Side of Hell (2013)

Songfacts®:

  • This is a cover of a LL Cool J song, about staying on top of the rap game. It features Kansas City rapper Tech N9ne. Guitarist Zoltán Bathory told Metal Covenant they recorded it to give a middle finger to those who don't like to see Metal bands doing rap songs. "Today it's not okay to collaborate with anybody in Hip-Hop," he explained. "10-15 years ago that was the norm and then we wouldn't have done it. Now, when it's not okay, when it's taboo, I wanna do it. That's the point, when you rebel, when you give that middle finger, because today this is a sacrilege. You don't touch hiphop, but f--k that, we're gonna and we did it."
  • Vocalist Ivan Moody said the band considered them doing a rap song as something really funny. He recalled to The Denver Westword: "Zoltan came to the table and said, 'You know what, dude, I've got an idea for a cover song.' Again, when he said it, I thought he was kidding. He sat down and he and Jeremy [Spencer, drums] wrote the song out, and I came back into the studio, and I was so blown away by it. And I was like, 'Do you know what's really going to piss people off?' If you think about it, back in the '90s, it was [acceptable] to do the rap-rock thing. [So many] bands were doing it, from Limp Bizkit to Korn, Faith No More and so on and so forth. Nowadays it's almost sacrilege. Immediately, I'm like, 'This is going to piss so many people off. Let's get Tech N9ne to come in here.' Because that guy's an underground hero. He came in, and he was fu--ing fantastic."
  • Bathory told Metal Covenant why they chose this particular song to record: "We had an idea to cover 'Mama Said Knock You Out.' We thought it was the irony of Five Finger Death Punch, when people said Mama Said Knock You Out, it just kinda went hand in hand. LL Cool J was always somebody who was cool. Even metalheads are okay with him. Everybody's heard that song and everybody knows that one and people are down with him. He's cool, he's okay, right. He's an artist that everybody accepts. Then we made the song heavy and when Tech N9ne came it, we thought 'Oh yeah, this is happening. F--k it, Let's put it on the record.'"
  • Speaking with Artist Direct, Tech N9ne discussed his contribution to the song. "They called me, and I was actually doing a show at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. Their studio was like right down the street," he recalled. "I thought, 'f--k it.' I went and did that s--t. It was a cover of LL Cool J's 'Mama Said Knock You Out,' and I was so happy because once I heard Ivan Moody screaming I knew, 'Oh s--t, this is going to be hard as f—k!'"

    Tech added: "I changed the words a little bit. They gave me some ideas of what I could say. I was like, 'Thank you man!' I went in there and did my s--t. I've had so many people come up to me and say, 'You and Five Finger, man, I love it!'"

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