Review Summary: A decent, albeit forgettable and disappointing Megadeth release.Lineup:
Dave Mustaine - vocals, rhythm guitar
Dave Ellefson - bass guitar, backing vocals
Chris Broderick - lead guitar
Shawn Drover - drums
+ David Draiman - vocals on "Dance In The Rain" and "Forget To Remember"
Produced by Johnny K.
Since its reunification, Megadeth has released several albums. Starting with 2004's The System Has Failed
, things seemed really promising - TSHF was exactly what one could expect, with powerful, passionate music and superb musicians (including Chris Poland of early Megadeth and Vinnie Colaiuta). Three years later, United Abominations
was released, an album which was somewhat disappointing for me except for a few songs, and two years after that Endgame
, which was one of the best metal releases of that year and made many people believe the real Megadeth has come back.
In 2011, Thirteen
was released. For many people, it was a disappointment, I think it was pretty good, even though it contained several bad songs, and when the new album was announced, I was really looking forward to it. And then it happened - the title track. I was thinking - is this really Megadeth? It sounded largely uninspired, with atrocious vocal work and simplistic instrumentals. And it's the title track, man - I started having a bad feeling about the album.
Later the second single was released, called Kingmaker
. It was a lot better than the title track, but it still sounded utterly passionless and generic. I was wondering, what the whole album is like? Let's see.
starts off with Kingmaker
, a thrashy, but (as mentioned) largely uninspired and passionless track. It's fast and features some pretty nice instrumentals but it's pretty much "thrash on paper". I like the bass on this one, so far pretty good. This is followed by the title track, which is pretty bad, but passable. The main problem is in the verses - the vocal work is terrible and the lyrics are not any good (when you feeeeeeeel life is bringing you down, blahblahblah). By this point, I still had some hopes, and the beginning of Burn!
seemed like it'd be pretty good - unfortunately what followed was one of the worst tracks on the album with a ***ty riff and bad lyrics (Burn baby burn, 'cause it feels so good! Burn baby burn, like I knew you would!). What the *** Dave?
By the end of Burn!
, my hopes for the rest were pretty much gone. I was still going to listen to the rest, so what followed was Built For War
, which is kinda good - but again, it "works on paper", and in reality it lacks bite - I just felt like it could do a lot better. Oh well. The next in line is Off The Edge
, hands down the worst atrocity on the whole damn thing, with Dave yelling CRAZY! I'M GOING CRAZY! THE WORLD IS CRAZY! through most of the song. I facepalmed and moved on.
Dance In The Rain
is good. Like, actually good - if the whole album was like this, I'd easily give it a 3.5. It starts off slow and by the end gets pretty intense - oh look, finally some progression! It also features some vocal work from Disturbed's David Draiman, who manages to sound really good here, even though I don't like his other work at all. With my hopes restored a bit, I brace myself and go on. Beginning Of Sorrow
- another good one. I really like the verses, it sounds cool, the chorus is lame (Beginning of Sorrow... there will be no tomorrow... seriously Dave?), but overall it features some nice work throughout the song.
The Blackest Crow
is pretty awesome. It's different from every other song on the album, features a banjo (!!) and its lyrics are not as crappy as the others. Forget To Remember
is in my opinion the best one on the album. It sounds energic, melodic and the vocal delivery is nice. The song has a poppy feel to it and it sounds like it could fit nicely on United Abominations
. It's catchy and has a nice chorus.
Don't Turn Your Back
starts off fast and lame, with a generic double bass pattern by one of the most boring drummers I know and then slows down and gets pretty decent, save for the lyrics.
The album ends with a cover of Thin Lizzy
's Cold Sweat
. They did a pretty good job on that one and it closes the album pretty nicely.
Overall, the album is not bad, but it's worse than all the albums released since Megadeth's reunion (and arguably the worst Megadeth album yet, competing only with The World Needs A Hero) and leaves a bad aftertaste because of songs like Burn!
and Off The Edge
. And there are also the generic songs, which are listenable, but sound more like "Mehgadeth" than "Megadeth".
- decent lead guitar work
- several good songs
- at least it's not completely ***ty like I expected after hearing Super Collider
- it's ***ty enough in places
- the lyrics are bad and so is the vocal delivery in several places
- the album sounds passionless
Highlights are Dance In The Rain, Beginning Of Sorrow, The Blackest Crow and Forget To Remember.
By the way, I see a lot of people saying "this album is the worst since Risk, blah blah". Personally, I think Risk
was a great album - if anything, it was some fun hard rock and contained many memorable and varied songs with lots of influences. And it had a bite, an identity, an idea - Super Collider
mostly lacks all three.