Public Enemy No. 1


  • This is a single from American heavy metal band Megadeth's thirteenth studio album, TH1RT3EN. The song was debuted on July 4, 2011 at a show in Hamburg, Germany.
  • The song was written from the perspective of 1920s and 30s gangster Al Capone. It was inspired by a possible haunting incident while the band was recording in an old building in Tennessee which once served as a "hideaway" of Capone's.
  • Other songs inspired by Capone include Paper Lace's 1974 chart-topper "The Night Chicago Died" and Prince Buster's 1964 ska classic "Al Capone," which was later reworked by The Specials into the UK hit single "Gangsters."
  • The writing of the song was started by the band during a soundcheck in Croatia in 2010 and completed in Vienna, Austria a short while later. Another TH1RT3EN track, "Never Dead" was penned by the band in the same Austrian venue.
  • Bassist Dave Ellefson described this song to MusicRadar as a, "New Wave Of British Heavy Metal-type song, at least as far as what I do." He continued: "I loved the early Def Leppard records, and I'm copping a bit of a Rick Savage bass approach on it. I really tried to write around the vocals. I love to hear as much of the band, especially the vocals, when I record a bass part. As a player, I want to be the mortar between the blocks that glue the building together.

    Once the vocal melody developed, Johnny [K, producer] and I worked with Dave [Mustaine], and that allowed me to put down a strong bass part. It was a fun way to record. I had a lot of note choices available to me, and there's a cool moving bassline in the B section of the verse as well as the chorus."
  • The video was filmed on September 17, 2001 in Santa Clarita, California on a movie set where old Westerns are filmed. The Western-themed clip includes live animals and footage of the band.


Be the first to comment...

Editor's Picks

Classic MetalFact or Fiction

Ozzy, Guns N' Roses, Judas Priest and even Michael Bolton show up in this Classic Metal quiz.

Jethro TullFact or Fiction

Stage urinals, flute devices, and the real Aqualung in this Fact or Fiction.

Psychedelic LyricsMusic Quiz

Whoa man! Do you know which band came up with these cosmic lyrics?

Timothy B. SchmitSongwriter Interviews

The longtime Eagle talks about soaring back to his solo career, and what he learned about songwriting in the group.

MetallicaFact or Fiction

Beef with Bon Jovi? An unfortunate Spandex period? See if you can spot the true stories in this Metallica version of Fact or Fiction.

Jay, Peaches, Spinderella and other Darrining VictimsSong Writing

Just like Darrin was replaced on Bewitched, groups have swapped out original members, hoping we wouldn't notice.