Hook in Mouth
Megadeth Lyrics


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A cockroach in the concrete, courthouse tan and beady eyes.
A slouch with fallen arches, purging truths into great lies.
A little man with a big eraser, changing history
Procedures that he's programmed to, all he hears and sees.

Altering the facts and figures, events and every issue.
Make a person disappear, and no one will ever miss you.
Rewrites every story, every poem that ever was.
Eliminates incompetence, and those who break the laws.
Follow the instructions of the New Ways' Evil Book of Rules.
Replacing rights with wrongs, the files and records in the schools.

You say you've got the answers, well who asked you anyway?
Ever think maybe it was meant to be this way?
Don't try to fool us, we know the worst is yet to come.
I believe my kingdom will come.

F is for fighting, R is for red,
Ancestors' blood in battles they've shed.
E, we elect them, E, we eject them,
In the land of the free, and the home of the brave.
D, for your dying, O, your overture,
M, they will cover your grave with manure.
This spells out freedom, it means nothing to me,
As long as there's a P.M.R.C.

F is for fighting, R is for red,
Ancestors' blood in battles they've shed.
E, we elect them, E, we eject them,
In the land of the free and the home of the brave.
D, for your dying, O, your overture,
M is for money and you know what that cures.
This spells out freedom, it means nothing to me,
As long as there's a P.M.R.C.

Put your hand right up my shirt,
Pull the strings that make me work,
Jaws will part, words fall out,
like a fish with hook in mouth.

Rewrites every story, every poem that ever was.
Eliminates incompetence, and those who break the laws.
Follow the instructions of the New Ways' Evil Book of Rules.
Replacing rights with wrongs, the files and records in the schools.

I'm not a fish




Hook in mouth
I'm a man

Overall Meaning

The song "Hook In Mouth" by Megadeth is a scathing critique of the censorship and control of information in society, specifically by the Parents Music Resource Center (PMRC) in the 1980s. The opening lines describe a cockroach, a symbol of resilience and adaptability, surviving in the concrete jungle of the city. However, the lyrics quickly shift focus to a man with a big eraser who is changing history to fit his own agenda. This man is a representation of those in power who manipulate the truth and the media to maintain their control over society.


The song talks about the deceptions and rewriting of history that are a part of everyday life, including in education systems. The New Ways' Evil Book of Rules refers to the PMRC's suggested rating system for music that would replace the previous warning labels that were displayed on album covers. The lyrics also suggest that they would replace existing music education programs with their own versions, limiting the creativity and freedom of students.


The chorus is a call to arms for individuals to stand up to those in power who seek to censor and control them. The repeated letters F-R-E-E-D-O-M spell out "freedom," but the irony is that it means nothing to the singer as long as the PMRC exists. Similarly, the repeated letters F-R-E-E-D-O-M with M standing not for "money" but for "manure" highlights how society's focus on money and power can make empty the concept of freedom.


Line by Line Meaning

A cockroach in the concrete, courthouse tan and beady eyes.
A common and insignificant creature found in an imposing and serious institution, represented by its tan color and small eyes.


A slouch with fallen arches, purging truths into great lies.
A lazy and deformed person falsifying and distorting facts and reality to fit his own agenda.


A little man with a big eraser, changing history.
A mediocre and unimportant individual with the power to erase and rewrite history based on his own interests.


Procedures that he's programmed to, all he hears and sees.
The individual is blindly following procedures, unable to think critically, and only sees and hears what he is programmed to do.


Altering the facts and figures, events and every issue.
Changing the truth and statistics, warping events, and influencing any topic or situation.


Make a person disappear, and no one will ever miss you.
The individual has the power and ability to make someone vanish without any consequences or repercussions.


Rewrites every story, every poem that ever was.
The person alters and modifies every piece of literature for their own benefit.


Eliminates incompetence, and those who break the laws.
The individual removes all traces of inadequacy and unlawfulness to maintain their power and control.


Follow the instructions of the New Ways' Evil Book of Rules.
The individual is following the unethical and immoral instructions of a book that will lead to their gain, even if it causes harm and damage to others.


Replacing rights with wrongs, the files and records in the schools.
They are changing the foundation of rights and wrongs, rewriting school records to suit their own biases and self-interest.


You say you've got the answers, well who asked you anyway?
The individual is questioning those who claim to have all the answers, asking who gave them the authority to claim as such.


Ever think maybe it was meant to be this way?
A sense of nihilistic resignation that questions the entire order of things.


Don't try to fool us, we know the worst is yet to come.
The person criticizes the individual and is aware that things will only get worse under their rule.


I believe my kingdom will come.
The individual believes in their own power and success in the future.


F is for fighting, R is for red, Ancestors' blood in battles they've shed. E, we elect them, E, we eject them, In the land of the free, and the home of the brave. D, for your dying, O, your overture, M, they will cover your grave with manure.
The acrostic poem spells out the word 'FREEDOM,' and each letter represents a different facet of American society. The person is questioning if it is truly freedom if it leads to death, manipulation, and corruption.


This spells out freedom, it means nothing to me, As long as there's a P.M.R.C.
The person is disillusioned by the concept of freedom because it seems hollow and irrelevant in the face of an organization that seeks to censor and control music.


Put your hand right up my shirt, Pull the strings that make me work.
The person is comparing themselves to a puppet that is being manipulated by someone else.


Jaws will part, words fall out, like a fish with hook in mouth.
The person is likening themselves to a fish that has been caught and is forced to say whatever the person wants. They feel helpless and unable to speak their truth.


I'm not a fish, Hook in mouth, I'm a man
The person is asserting their identity as a human being rather than an object that can be controlled and manipulated.




Lyrics © OBO APRA/AMCOS

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