Posts Tagged ‘Youthanasia’

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.

bw-Nick-MenzaI have said it time and time again that 2016 has been one hell of a bad year if you are a fan of metal or rock music. We have lost everyone from Lemmy Kilmister (the end of Dec 2015), David Bowie, Glenn Frey, Prince, and now we have lost former Megadeth drummer Nick Menza at the age of 51 yesterday in Los Angeles. Apparently, Nick was onstage last night at The Baked Potato in Studio City with his band OHM when he collapsed after just the third song of the set and authorities have not yet commented on the cause of death at this time. Nick was best known for his nine years that he spent in Megadeth for what I felt was an iconic lineup that also featured Marty Friedman. The band recorded some of it’s most iconic albums in Rust In Peace, Countdown To Extinction, Youthanasia, and Cryptic Writings (which would end up being his swan song from the band). Most of the classic tracks you hear live are Nick Menza Megadeth tracks because that is how iconic that line up was. After Megadeth, he had been in several bands like Orphaned To Hatred, Deltanaut, and OHM which featured former original Megadeth guitar player Chris Poland.

nickmenzasolo2014_638Marty Friedman took to Facebook to comment saying, “We all know the great and unique drummer that Nick Menza was, but he was also a trustworthy friend, a hilarious bandmate, as well as a very loving dad. I`m beyond sad, did not see this coming at all. RIP Brother.” Dave Mustaine also commented on Twitter saying, “TELL ME THIS ISN’T TRUE! I woke at 4 AM to hear Nick Menza passed away on 5/21 playing his drums w/Ohm at the Baked Potato. .” OHM commented on Facebook as well saying, “RIP Nick Menza. In the brief time I knew you, it was a pleasure. We will miss you “Machine”.” It is sad to hear, but in one way at least he passed doing what he loved to do and that is playing the drums. R.I.P. Nick Menza (July 23, 1964-May 21, 2016)

youthanasiaFor this week’s album of the week, I am diving headfirst into a Megadeth record to me that is the most amazing one of the Friedman/Menza era of Megadeth called Youthanasia. I saw Friedman/Menza because along with Dave Mustaine (Vocals) and David Ellefson (Bass), the album featured Nick Menza (Drums) and Marty Friedman (Guitar) and as this was the sixth overall release from Megadeth, it was the third to feature the duo. Youthanasia took some crap for it’s commercial appeal and how it was less than a thrash album then their previous releases. The title of the record itself was a Portmanteau of the words Youth and Euthanasia with the album artwork featuring a women hanging babies on a clothesline. Dave Ellefson describes the influence of the artwork, “That song [Youthanasia] was probably the strongest representation of how we feel about the young people who listen to our music and what their future holds for them. It’s like you have a choice, you can become proactive or you can choose ‘Youthanasia’.” The album was quite successful in terms of sales as it peaked at number 4 in the US Billboard Top 200 and later this year in November it will be celebrating it’s 2oTH Anniversary since it was released.

youthanasia 2The first track on the record is Reckoning Day and it starts off with a bang as the drums sound like a barrage of bombs hitting the earth in a track taht sounds to me like Dave is talking about Heroine. For Example, “I like the way that you let me in, The way you look when the walls cave in. I like the way that your stomach knots and how you cry for it all to stop.” Train Of Consequences is one of those songs that starts off sounding like it’s going to be a thrash tune, but it turns in a great Metal tune about gambling. Addicted To Chaos has Nick Menza building up the track as the rest of the band slowly fades in. The song is about a person that loses someone very special to them that they don’t think they can replace. A Tout Le Monde is one of the most classic tunes that Megadeth has written in a track that the speaker wants let everyone know in his life that he loves them before he dies. Elysian Fields is a classic scorcher that has a double meaning to it where Dave will speak about religion like the death of Jesus and fighting and dying in the name of freedom hence the idea of achieving your destiny. The Killing Road is next on the album and it’s a song that talks about the troubles of touring so much as it’s also one of those tracks that gets pretty close to be thrash like. Blood Of Heroes is an amazing track that starts like A Tout… where we get acoustic before it goes electric in a track about war.

youthFamily Tree was a track that was very risque at the time of it’s release because it deals with the growing epidemic of child molestation and how it could possibly affect their children’s children in the future. As I said above the track Youthanasia is a statement on the young generation and it could talk about how they were left out to dry by the older generations. The very sledge hammer like I Thought I Knew It All is a self explanatory track about thinking you know everything, but how people can surprise you. It is definitely one of the top 5 tracks on the record and I have only heard Megadeth perform this track once live. Black Curtains is one of the heaviest tracks on the record and to me the song is about armageddon by nuclear war. Victory is the last track on the record on the record that is sort of a track that reflects on the band’s career and how he has been able to be successful. I really love this album and think it’s definitely in my top 5 Megadeth albums of all time. I am giving the album four stars out of five for a final grade.

aIt’s the second entry this week for the album of the week in a week that already featured a release from The Queens Of The Stone Age and my review of Amon Amarth’s Deceiver Of The Gods. So, we got the fourteenth album from thrash metal titans Megadeth called Super Collider. The album’s line up consists of Dave Mustaine, Dave Ellefson, Chris Broderick, and Shawn Drover and is produced by Johnny K. The album also features a guest appearance from Disturbed/Device frontman David Draiman and it’s the first album to be released on Dave’s own label Tradecraft via Universal.

a2Kingmaker is the first track and it opens up with a very dark bass line from bass master Dave Ellefson over a helicopter. Then before you know it, Dave Mustaine and Chris Broderick came all guns a blazing with the sonic guitar assault. The track is amazing as it talks about wanting everything now and Dave acting like he wants to be the King S*** (hence Kingmaker). The title track is next and it feels like more of a hard rock song than a thrash metal song.  I’m not saying the track is bad, but it seems Dave has gone back to the days of Youthanasia and Cryptic Writings (which are some of my favorite albums) for inspiration with this track. Burn! opens up with the guitar master flexing his muscles before breaking into the track. The song is a great hard rock track, but the lyrics are a little weak (Burn baby burn cause it feels so good?) Built For War is them getting back into Megadeth mode with the double bass drum assault with the sonic assault from their fearless leader and his guitar partner in a Rust In Peace kind of style. Off The Edge is the next track on the record and it starts with some riffing before the song breaks in and as much of the album so far it explores a hard rock feel like Cryptic Writings. Dance In The Rain features Dave talking through the music as if he is telling a story to you which talks of big brother and a storm brewing so I hope you can dance in the rain. The track also features David Draiman on vocals.

a3Beginning Of Sorrow opens up with a killer bass riff from arguably my favorite bassist. It’s a track that is a little different for Megadeth with his daughter Electra adding background vocals to the track. The Blackest Crow is the next track and it has a bluegrass country feel to it that is dominant in the beginning and remains a part of the song throughout. It seems that Megadeth is expanding their horizons and I like it. As I said the bluegrass in prominent in the beginning before a cadence like drum beat starts to take over before Dave sings. Forget To Remember is the next track on the album and it’s a complete hard rock song with the power chords. Don’t get me wrong, it’s an awesome track, but if you were expecting Endgame or United Abominations by this point then your out of luck. Don’t Turn Your Back… starts off with a blues like riff before that track everybody was expecting kicks in. It hits you like a freight train with the double bass assault and that typical Megadeth like riffing. The last track on the record is a cover of Thin Lizzy’s Cold Sweat which was an amazing song to begin with. The album isn’t that bad, but it’s a little bit of a departure for Megadeth sort of like what Risk was at the time except this is ten times better than Risk. I am going to give this record 3.5 stars out of five.