Suicidal Tendencies – “Controlled by Hatred/Feel Like Shit…Déjà Vu” (1989)

Suicidal TendenciesThis is a confusing release by Suicidal Tendencies and Epic Records.  Apparently, it is intended to be some sort of “double EP”.  That seems like a weird concept.  Controlled by Hatred/Feel Like Shit…Déjà Vu contains nine tracks in total.  Four of the tracks were re-recordings of songs by the band No Mercy (of which S.T.’s Mike Muir and Mike Clark were previously members).  Earlier versions can be found on No Mercy’s 1987 album Widespread Bloodshed Love Runs Red.  There’s also a re-recording of a song from another one of Mike Muir’s old bands, Los Cycos.  Filling out the album are two versions of How Will I Laugh Tomorrow, an unreleased song from the How Will I Laugh Tomorrow When I Can’t Even Smile Today sessions called Just Another Love Song, and a brand new song called Feel Like Shit…Déjà Vu.

In my opinion, the Controlled by Hatred/Feel Like Shit…Déjà Vu record mislead S.T. fans.  There wasn’t any indication of the album cover that the contents of the album were mostly re-hashed songs.  I’m sure some fans thought that Controlled by Hatred/Feel Like Shit…Déjà Vu was a proper follow-up to the How Will I Laugh Tomorrow When I Can’t Even Smile Today album released in 1988.  That would be excusable if Controlled by Hatred/Feel Like Shit…Déjà Vu was a very good record, but I do not think it is.  The material here pales in comparison to the stuff on How Will I Laugh Tomorrow When I Can’t Even Smile Today.

My hypothesis is that the band and record label wanted to keep the momentum from How Will I Laugh Tomorrow When I Can’t Even Smile Today going.  S.T. was a hot item, and the label probably wanted to keep their name out there while waiting for a proper follow-up to How Will I Laugh Tomorrow When I Can’t Even Smile Today.  And guess what?  It worked.  Controlled by Hatred/Feel Like Shit…Déjà Vu sold quite well.  In fact, it’s certified gold by the RIAA.  Although it should be noted that the RIAA classifies Controlled by Hatred/Feel Like Shit…Déjà Vu as an EP — which means it only had to sell 250,000 copies to go gold.  Full-length LPs have to surpass 500,000 copies sold to garner gold status.  (How a nine-song record gets classified as an EP is anybody’s guess.)  But nevertheless, Controlled by Hatred/Feel Like Shit…Déjà Vu kept the Suicidal train rolling, and subsequently S.T.’s 1990 album Lights…Camera…Revolution became the best selling album of their career.  My score: C+

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One thought on “Suicidal Tendencies – “Controlled by Hatred/Feel Like Shit…Déjà Vu” (1989)

  1. Your review looks really long but it’s average; just the album titles alone are about 30% of your review! I will heed your advice when buying.

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