Torchlight II is more than its loot chase

I sat with my hands resting on the keyboard and mouse, mulling over a selection of loot I'd accumulated from my hacking and slashing through the Ghosts of Plunder Cove. Did I want to equip the Hasty Maul, which has a "very slow attack speed" but also a "+7% attack speed"? Doesn't sound so "hasty." How about the Vampiric Lumber Sledge with the ability to steal 6 health on a hit? Or maybe the Paired Battle Axe with a "very fast attack speed" and a "+5% chance to execute"? Execute what? I'm not sure.