Peace Sells... but Who's Buying?

1986 studio album by Megadeth

Peace Sells... but Who's Buying? is the second studio album by Megadeth. Megadeth is an American thrash metal band. It was released on September 19, 1986 by Capitol Records. Combat Records was going to release the album first, but Capitol bought the rights to it. Many band members had drug abuse problems while they were making the album. Guitarist Chris Poland and drummer Gar Samuelson were fired from the band after the album came out. A song from the album, "Peace Sells", was the band's first music video. The art on the album's cover shows Vic Rattlehead in front of the United Nations Headquarters.

Peace Sells... but Who's Buying?
Studio album by
ReleasedSeptember 19, 1986
RecordedFebruary 15 – March 20, 1986 in Los Angeles, California
GenreThrash metal[1]
LabelCapitol Records
ProducerDave Mustaine, Randy Burns
Megadeth chronology
Killing Is My Business... and Business Is Good!
Peace Sells... but Who's Buying?
So Far, So Good... So What!

Peace Sells... but Who's Buying? is one of the first thrash metal albums.[1] Many people think it made extreme metal more popular. It was put on 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.[2] In 2004, the album was remixed by Megadeth frontman Dave Mustaine. It was remixed again in 2011 for the album's 25th anniversary. The album's front art shows Vic Rattlehead. He is standing in front of the United Nations Headquarters. The art was made by Ed Repka. Repka made more art for the band later.

Background change

In December 1985, Dave Mustaine said that the band was making music for a second album. He also said that two songs ("Black Friday" and "Bad Omen") were done. Mustaine said that these songs were much faster than the music from Megadeth's first album, Killing Is My Business... and Business Is Good!.[3] Mustaine and bassist David Ellefson wanted to change how people thought about heavy metal by making music with political lyrics.[4]

In early 1986, Megadeth had a short tour in the United States. At the tour's concerts, the band played music that was going to be on Peace Sells.[5] Combat Records gave them $25,000 to record the album. Recording the album was very hard because of many problems. Mustaine and Ellefson were homeless. Chris Poland and Gar Samuelson did not show up to make music very much because they were using heroin.[5] After the band finished recording the album, someone from Capitol Records asked Megadeth to join their record label. The band joined Capitol. The album was released with Capitol Records.

Track listing change

All songs written by Dave Mustaine, except "I Ain't Superstitous" by Willie Dixon.[6]

No. Title Length
1. "Wake Up Dead"   3:40
2. "The Conjuring"   5:04
3. "Peace Sells"   4:04
4. "Devils Island"   5:05
5. "Good Mourning/Black Friday"   6:41
6. "Bad Omen"   4:05
7. "I Ain't Superstitious"   2:46
8. "My Last Words"   4:57
Total length:

Personnel change

Information is from the album liner notes.[6]


Other People Casey McMackin - singing on Good Mourning/Black Friday and My Last Words[7]


  • Edward J. Repka – cover art and album design
  • Dave Mustaine, Andy Somers – cover concept


  • Dave Mustaine – production
  • Randy Burns – production, engineering
  • Casey McMackin – engineering
  • Paul Lani – mixing
  • Stan Katayama – mixing

2004 remix

  • Dave Mustaine – production, mixing
  • Ralph Patlan – engineering, mixing
  • Lance Dean – engineering, editing
  • Scott "Sarge" Harrison – editing
  • Tom Baker – mastering

Charts change

Certifications change

Region Certification Certified units/sales
Canada (Music Canada)[11] Platinum 100,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[12]
2004 release
Silver 60,000^
United States (RIAA)[13] Platinum 1,000,000^

^shipments figures based on certification alone

References change

  1. 1.0 1.1 "The 25 greatest thrash metal albums ever". Kerrang!. Retrieved 2021-08-15.
  2. "1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die by TechElec | Discogs Lists". Retrieved 2022-10-25.
  3. "MEGADETH – Love It To Death (MF12, 1985) | Features / Interviews @ Metal Forces Magazine". Retrieved 2022-10-30.
  4. Matsumoto, Jon (1986-10-16). "MEGADETH: THESE HEAVY METALERS THRASH FOR PEACE". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2022-10-30.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Ellefson, David; McIver, Joel (2013-10-29). My Life with Deth: Discovering Meaning in a Life of Rock & Roll. Simon and Schuster. ISBN 978-1-4516-9988-3.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Peace Sells... But Who's Buying? (Reissue liner notes). Capitol Records. 2004. pp. 4–12.
  7. Scorpion, The. "SCORPION Q+A". Retrieved 30 August 2022.
  8. "Megadeth Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved June 23, 2021.
  9. "ピース・セルズ…バット・フーズ・バイイング? 25thアニヴァーサリー・スペシャル・エディション メガデス" [Peace Sells... But Who's Buying 25th Anniversary Special Edition] (in Japanese). Oricon. Retrieved October 4, 2021.
  10. "Top Billboard 200 Albums – Year-End 1987". Billboard. Archived from the original on January 24, 2015. Retrieved June 23, 2021.
  11. "Canadian album certifications – Megadeth – Peace Sells... but Who's Buying?". Music Canada.
  12. "British album certifications – Megadeth – Peace Sells... but Who's Buying?". British Phonographic Industry.
  13. "American album certifications – Megadeth – Peace Sells ... but Who's Buying". Recording Industry Association of America.