Posts Tagged ‘Dave Mustaine’

118933420One of the greatest thrash albums of all time in my opinion has always been Metallica’s second album Ride The Lightning which was released on July 27, 1984 via Megaforce Records (later re-released by Elektra Records). The album in my opinion still featured some of the fury and rawness of the previous effort Kill ‘Em All, but it was a step forward in their sound that would eventually be featured on their next effort Master Of Puppets. The album also still featured traces of former guitarist Dave Mustaine of Megadeth who has writing credits on the album. The band once again featured James Hetfield (Lead Vocals/Guitar), Kirk Hammett (Lead Guitar), Cliff Burton (Bass), and Lars Ulrich (Drums) while the album was produced by Flemming Rasmussen as well as Metallica. The album was a critical success for the band as it established that they were the alphas of the Metal scene that was emerging in the US as it charted at Number 48 on the Billboard Top 200 while being certified platinum six times. The change in style of this album to the previous was all due to Cliff Burton who apparently introduced musical theory to the band and they allowed him to have more input as far as writing was concerned.

main_1525890639-James-Hetfield-Jason-Newsted-Signed-Metallica-Ride-the-Lightning-Vinyl-Record-Album-Inscribed-04-2013-JSA-COA-PristineAuction.com1. Fight Fire With Fire– The opening track starts with an acoustic riff that Cliff Burton had been playing around with before the all out metal assault hits you like a freight train. The track is all about denouncing the idea of an eye for an eye with the fear of nuclear attacks being an option. 5/5

2. Ride The Lightning– the title track is one that Mustaine helped write, but that Metallica had to slow down because neither Hammett or Hetfield could match the speed of Mustaine. The track is about the corruption of the justice system as told by a man facing the electric chair. 5/5

3. For Whom The Bell Tolls– a church bell kicks off the track that is one of my personal favorites and the opening chromatic riff that you hear is actually Cliff Burton playing with distortion and a wah wah pedal and not the guitars. The lyrics and track were based off of Ernest Hemingway’s book of the same name in the matter of the dishonor and all of the horrors associated with warfare. 5/5

4. Fade To Black– The track is a ballad of sorts, but it deals with a very touchy subject matter of suicide. Apparently. the track is about the emotions that Hetfield went through when he and Metallica had discovered that someone had stolen all of their equipment before a show in Boston, MA in January of 1984. 5/5

118875110-35. Trapped Under Ice– This was a track that was based off of a demo that Hammett had written with Exodus called Impaler. They tuned it up and fixed it and turned it into this track that is all about a man that wakes up after being trapped in a cryogenic state and the helplessness that he goes through after. 5/5

6. Escape– While I am a fan of this track, apparently James Hetfield hates this song because this track was the result of the label telling them they had to write a more radio friendly song. I really like this track. 5/5

7. Creeping Death-This is probably the most famous Metallica song ever written besides Fade, Bell, and even Master Of Puppets. The track is about the story of Moses and the plagues that engulfed Egypt. 5/5

8. The Call of Ktulu– The instrumental track was named after the H.P. Lovercraft book The Call Of Cthulhu and features the intro written in D Minor by Mustaine (He used again in Hangar 18) and is followed up by a bass solo by Cliff Burton. 5/5

My Final Thoughts– There is a reason that Loudwire ranked this album 8TH on their 50 Best Metal Albums of all time list and that is because it is one of the greatest albums written by Metallica. The album gets five stars out of five stars because it belongs in the five star album club.

R-1113013-1349122345-6756.jpegThere was once a time when four bands in the thrash metal world would each release an album that would go down in infamy and put the scene on the map. You see those bands would go on to be known as the Big Four of Thrash Metal and those bands are Metallica, Slayer, Megadeth, and Anthrax. Metallica would release Master Of Puppets, Slayer would release Reign In Blood, Anthrax would release Among The Living, and our album of the week this week was Peace Sells… But Who’s Buying? by Megadeth. The album was released on September 19, 1986 and it was the second album to feature Dave Mustiane (Lead Vocals/Guitar), David Ellefson (Bass), Chris Poland (Guitars), and Gar Samuelson (Drums). Unfortunately, this was the last album to ever feature Gar on Drums as he would pass away in 1999 and this was also the last to feature Chris Poland until 2004’s The System Has Failed Us as a session guitarist. The album was hugely successful for Megadeth at the time as it charted and peaked at number 74 on the Billboard Top 200 Chrtas as well as being listed in Robert Dimery’s 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die and Martin Popoff’s  Top 500 Heavy Metal Albums of All Time. Most importantly the album was ranked 9TH on Loudwire.com’s 50 Best Metal Albums Of All Time list.

megadeth-peace-sells-but-whos-buying-3-cd1. Wake Up Dead-The song just kicks right off into overdrive with Ellefson’s help as Dave tells us a story of a man who is cheating on his wife, but is afraid that if she finds out she’ll kill him. The track is autobiographical of a situation that Mustaine was in at one time. 5/5

2. The Conjuring-An interesting track that is all about black magic and according to Dave even has instructions on how to perform hexes. 5/5

3. Peace Sells– That world famous bass riff starts off the track before Mustaine and co. come in with one of the fiercest riffs in this track that is all about Mustaine’s distaste for the way American culture was at the time. That last stanza of the track where Dave sing Peace Sells along with all the guitar solos is one of my favorite moments in a track. 5/5

4. Devil’s Island– They are relentless as the fury continues into this track that is all about the French prison island French Guiana about a man who was imprisoned there, but after being spared by God he is forced to live out the rest of his days there. 5/5

megadeth-peace-sells-but-whos-buying-4-cd5. Good Mourning/Black Friday– The very melodic and eerie Good Mourning is the instrumental part of the track before it leads into Black Friday which is a track about a serial killer. The track was apparently inspired by the band’s original drummer Dijon Carruthers who had friends that practiced Occultism. 5/5

6. Bad Omen– The song is about Occultism as Mustaine once described the track as being about, “two happy campers who have stumbled onto a Satanic orgy in the middle of the woods.” He basically ends it by saying that, “they see these fools waiting around for Satan’s blessing.” 5/5

7. I Ain’t Superstitious– This is Megadeth’s cover of the Howlin’ Wolf track that was written by Willie Dixon. I love how Megadeth put their own twist on this bluesy track. 5/5

8. My Last Words– Is the last track on the album and a track that a lot of people believed proved that Megadeth were purveyors of speed metal and some of the best at it. The song is about the game of Russian Roulette and the fear that goes into playing this interesting game. 5/5

My Final Thoughts– I will always argue with anyone that I truly believe that this is the best Megadeth record ever released because this was a band that was hungry and ready to prove all the naysayers that they meant business. Listen to the whole damn album because this gets the perfect five score and is in the perfect five album club.

51fhehoazvl._sx331_bo1,204,203,200_It has been quite a long time since the last Heavy Metal Book Report was done on the blog, but we are promising more of these for 2019. The book that we are profiling for you guys today is none other than the autobiography of one of the most polarizing and controversial figures in thrash metal. I am talking about Mustaine: A Heavy Metal Memoir that was written by Dave Mustaine of Megadeth and Joseph Layden that was released August of 2011. All anyone had known about Dave before this point is that he was booted out of Metallica and has been trying to escape their shadow ever since. Dave was definitely fulfilling the purpose of explaining at least his side of the story so that we know the whole truth or at least one side of it. We get the whole story starting right from the beginning of his days growing up in two different religious house holds with one focused on Christianity and the other a Jehovah’s Witness way of life. We learn of the events that Dave always felt led up to his dismissal in New York, but we hear his side which was a very lonely trip back to California on that bus ride home. We read about the start of Megadeth through a very funny chance encounter with the second longest reigning member of Megadeth in David Ellefson who Dave lovingly called Junior. We also read about all the successes and failures that would follow for Dave all the way up to the point of this book being released.

91tksfippnlOne of the things I loved about the book is that you really do get to read the struggle that Dave went through always being the guy who was booted out of Metallica. It seemed that all Dave wanted was just a chance to talk with the guys, but something always happens that sets him back. In Chapter 13, he talks about his newfound sobriety and the birth of his first child Justis. Eventually when it became time to tour, he had a Monsters Of Rock tour to do with Metallica and Diamondhead to which he made every member of his band sign a sobriety pack. He talks about how he saw James and all he wanted to do was talk to him, but here is where it gets a little rough for Dave. He recounts, “The nice guys in Metallica had a twisted sense of humor. They invited me into their dressing room, where a big plate of what appeared to be cocaine sat beckoning and unattended.” Obviously, this crushed Dave to great extents because he said they knew what lengths he went to to stay sober, but they didn’t care. One of the things that always astonished me in this book is that no matter what current or past member he discusses, he treats them with respect in the book and he explains their exit. The best story is how every drummer would replace his predecessor beginning with the late Gar Samuelson. There are a lot of great stories in the book that he tells like how he almost dated Belinda Carlisle to his every day struggle with addiction as well as all the different managers he has gone through over the years. I am definitely going to give the book 4.2 stars out of five for a final grade. It never disappointed me at any point in the book.

megadeth-rust-in-peaceWhile everyone waits for the brand new track that Dave Mustaine has promised Megadeth fans, I figured we would check out one of the seminal Megadeth releases from 1990. Loudwire.com ranked Megadeth’s fourth album Rust In Peace at number 33 on their Top 50 Metal Albums of All Time list which beats out Metallica’s biggest release ever (The Black Album). Rust In Peace which was released on September 24, 1990 was a very special record for Frontman/Rhythm Guitarist Dave Mustaine because it was the first album to feature the line up of Nick Menza on Drums and Marty Friedman on Lead Guitar as well as original member David Ellefson on Bass. Dave found Nick Menza who was previous drummer Chuck Behler’s drum tech and replaced him exactly the same way Behler had replaced predecessor Gar Samuelson. Marty Friedman was found when he dropped a record off to Dave’s manager at the time requesting a shot at the job which he eventually won. The album has often been described by critics as one of the greatest Thrash Metal albums of all time that helped set the tone for metal in the 1990’s. It was Megadeth’s highest selling album at that point as it shipped one million copies going platinum as it peaked at number 23 on The Billboard Top 200 Charts.

51mhcxl9rxl1. Holy Wars… The Punishment Due– This absolute shredder was a song that was written due to an incident that occurred at a show in Northern Ireland. Dave had a little too much to drink and right before he sang Anarchy In The UK, he dedicated the track to the cause and a riot between Protestants and Catholics broke out. This was Dave’s apology for what had happened. 5/5

2. Hangar 18– Another shredder that hits a 1000 right from the start on a lyrical subject matter that was presented by Nick Menza discussing the idea of UFO’s and Area 51 and this is the result. 5/5

3. Take No Prisoners– Another shredder on the album that really showcases what Nick Menza brought to the table playing along David Ellefson. The track is about Prisoners of War. 5/5

4. Five Magics– an in your face track featuring some amazing bass playing from David Ellefson whose lyrics take on a different subject matter in more of a fantasy sense. 5/5

5. Poison Was The Cure-An amazing track driven by Ellefson’s bass playing, it’s a track that takes on a more personal tone as Dave talks about his personal drug use and the stranglehold it had. 5/5

megadeth-rust-in-peace-2-cd6. Lucretia– One of the best opening riffs on the album as they shred through the intro and into this track that is all about a ghost that lives in Dave’s attic. 5/5

7. Tornado Of Souls– One of my favorite tracks on the album that was written after Dave had to break off a relationship with a long time girlfriend and how he did it out of necessity because the relationship was too toxic. 5/5

8. Dawn Patrol– a different kind of track on the album that starts and is driven with an excellent bass riff from David Ellefson playing alongside his rhythm partner Nick Menza. The song is all about global warming and how we are destroying the planet. 5/5

9. Rust In Peace…  Polaris– Nick Menza flexes his stuff much like how Judas Priest’s Painkiller starts off before the band comes in for a track that is all about nuclear war hence the name Polaris at the end which is the cold war era Lockheed UGM-27 Polaris intercontinental ballistic missile. 5/5

My Final Thoughts– The way Dave thought of the album title is a little funny as it was a bumper sticker he saw while on the road one day. He liked the imagery that popped into his head and he used it. This is one of the most complete albums that Megadeth had ever recorded which shouldn’t surprise people that it’s featured on the 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die and why it was nominated for a Grammy for Best Metal Performance. That is why I gave the album five stars out of five for a final grade.

“When we were on tour in São Paulo in 2016, we filmed the ‘Conquer or Die’ video. We were so impressed with Brazilian award-winning director Leo Liberti, that we had him do the ‘Lying in State’ video as well. We had several friends and fans of the band, as well as the production crew, play roles in the video. Huge thanks goes to [Megadeth lead guitarist] Kiko Loureiro for introducing us to Leo. I especially like how bad ass Vic was with the sword. Who knew?” That is what Dave Mustaine said about the band’s latest music video to come off of Dystopia when he spoke to Rolling Stone Magazine. The band is celebrating 35 years in the business this year and this video marks the first of probably many that will give a nod to the old days as we also see Vic Rattlehead be a total bad ass. With his Katana sword in hand with the words Rust In Peace etched in the sword, the mascot gets himself some revenge. Megadeth has definitely stepped up their music video game once again with this video and this is a definite must watch. Check it out below and be sure to check out Megadeth on tour as well.

sanctuaryI am always looking for new bands to cover, but there is always that unfortunate circumstance when a member of a band passes away and I cover the band’s album as a tribute. Warrel Dane, the lead singer of the bands Sanctuary and Nevermore passed away this morning in Brazil of a heart attack. He was in Brazil recording his second solo album when the incident happened where he was staying. So, I wanted to pay tribute to Warrel Dane by covering an album from the band that introduced me to him in Sanctuary. The album that I chose for you guys is the band’s 1988 debut record Refuge Denied which was produced by Megadeth frontman Dave Mustaine and Paul Lani. You may be asking how in the world did they get Mustaine to produce the album? Apparently, after they recorded a demo, they approached Mustaine who had just performed with Megadeth in their area and they handed it to him. Mustaine was impressed enough with the band that he agreed to produce the album. The album featured Dane, Lenny Rutledge (Guitar), Sean Blosl (Guitar), Jim Sheppard (Bass), and Dave Budbill (Drums). Initially, the album had sold 7,000 copies on Vinyl, but has since sold over 200,000 worldwide.

sanctuary-refuge-denied-1988-japan-back1. Battle Angels– The band launches into overdrive with some chugging riffs right from the get go in a track that has some amazing battle fantasy lyrics. 4/5

2. Termination Force– The track starts off with that typical 80’s thrash melodic sound that is a little eerie with the guitars made to stand out the most before the rest of the band launches in and the song features some cool bass playing from Sheppard. It seems to be a song about rebelling against your government and the need to feel like you have to before it’s too late. 4/5

3. Die For My Sins– This is a kick ass song that has that trash metal sound with the power metal vocals in a track that is about someone who doesn’t have the will to live, but wants you to have fun for him. That is what it seems like anyways to me because I am not picking up a religious tone. 4/5

4. Soldiers of Steel-A track that has that Megadeth/Mercyful Fate to it with some killer guitar work with more of those fantasy inspired lyrics. 4/5

refuge-denied-515ccee9558bb5.  Sanctuary– Every great band has a song named after them right? Well, Iron Maiden did and so does Sanctuary. The track helps kick off side two of the vinyl and it does with this melodic riff that fades in and at first I was worried because of the intro, but the band turns up the tempo and they save the song. 4/5

6. White Rabbit– I wonder how much of an influence Dave was when the band decided to cover this Grace Slick written Jefferson Airplane track. Nonetheless, I have to say that this is a pretty decent cover, it’s better than Megadeth’s cover of These Boots. 4.5/5

7. Ascension To Destiny– This might musically be the best track on the whole record in my opinion. The band is on fire as the duel guitarists get it right on this one and it fits with Dane’s powerful vocals. 5/5

8. The Third War– It’s an all out metal assault on this track which is about, you guessed it, the possibility of World War III which is nuclear war. 4.5/5

9. Veil Of Disguise– I love the clean guitar channel, slow tempo’d track that this is because it just has that evil feel to it. I think lyrically, we are in ancient Egypt maybe just from the nature of the lyrics. Don’t fret because the distortion does come back at some point in the track. 4/5

My Final Thoughts– This is a pretty decent debut for the band, but it was their next album that would top this one’s sales. Nevertheless, I love the mixture of thrash with power metal because it was something a little different even though you can hear the Mercyful Fate influence in it. I am going to give the album 4.2 stars out of five for a final grade.

megadeth-dystopia_japan_edition-frontalJust as we have done for the last couple of weeks, we are covering albums by bands that won at the 6TH Annual Monster Entertainment Awards. We have already covered the album of the year (Post Pop Depression by Iggy Pop) and the rock album of the year (Gore by Deftones). So, it’s only natural that we move down the line to the next which is the metal album of the year which was taken home by Megadeth for their 15TH studio album Dystopia. In a way Dystopia was a return to form for Megadeth after lackluster sales plagued their previous album. The band had some new players for the album in Kiko Loureiro (Guitars) and Lamb Of God drummer Chris Adler (who recorded the record with the band, but is not a permanent member). Together they joined Dave Mustaine (Lead Vocals/Guitars) and David Ellefson (Bass) in recording what was a huge step in the right direction as the album debuted at number three on the Billboard Top 200 charts making it the second highest charted album in the band’s history (Countdown To Extinction debuted at number two). The album also peaked in the top 5 in six other countries and the title track earned the band their first Grammy after 11 failed attempts for Best Metal Performance.

megadeth-dystopia_japan_edition-trasera1. The Threat Is Real– The song is everything you would want to hear from Megadeth as it’s fierce, in your face, and reminds of me of Rust In Peace era Megadeth. Dave Mustaine is still writing his fierce politically driven lyrics of world destruction and it still sounds fresh. 5/5

2. Dystopia– The title track that won the band the Grammy for Best Metal Performance features some really amazing guitar work from Loureiro and Mustaine that sort of reminds me again of Rust In Peace. The song is about a world that is not ok in any way shape or form. 5/5

3. Fatal Illusion– I have always been a huge fan of Dave Mustaine and the lyrics that he writes as in this one about a prisoner so evil and against society that nothing can kill the evil inside him even the lethal injection. There is a cool bass section in the track that showcases Ellefson’s amazing abilities. 5/5

4. Death From Within– A cool track on the album about an enemy that is constantly is under attack in war that he waits for the perfect moment to enact revenge. 4.5/5

5. Bullet To The Brain– A cool drum cadence starts off the track with some acoustic guitars before the band kicks into overdrive. The track is an interesting take on relationships about how man give in easily to sex when they think they are winning, but they are really losing. 4/5

6. Post American World– an interesting commentary on the way the world is today. We all complain about what is happening in America even though we feel safe, but what if all of that changes and America falls? What will we look like in Post American World? The music reminds me a lot of The World Needs A Hero era Megadeth. 5/5

megadeth-dystopia_japan_edition-cd7. Poisonous Shadows– The track opens more with the clean/acoustic guitar playing before the band turns up the energy in a track about someone who holds some sort of guilt inside of them and they let it manifest. I love hearing Farah Siraj’s vocals in the background, it adds to the track. 5/5

8. Conquer Or Die– A very cool instrumental track on the album that showcases what these guys can do. I think Kiko adds some of that Brazilian flavor to this track and it’s very cool. 5/5

9. Lying In State– An in your face track right from the get go that is hammering and is classic Megadeth. The track is about the government and how they distract you fromt he real issues that are going on as our society is in decline. 5/5

10. The Emperor– The track has more of a hard rock flavor to it then the rest of the album and it may be the band showcasing their influences in a track about a president who thinks he is King, but doesn’t realize he is a joke. 4/5

11. Foreign Policy– This is the band’s cover of California punk band Fear’s track that is actually pretty kick ass. Check it out cause it sounds like something Suicidal Tendencies should have covered. 4.5/5

My Final Thoughts– Sadly I do not know if Chris Adler will return to the fold for future albums, but this was truly an amazing record. It was definitely Megadeth moving in the right direction and they deserved the Grammy and the win here. Kiko Loureiro is an amazing edition to the band and I can not wait to here what else he brings to the table. I am giving the album 4.7 stars out of five for a final grade.