Saturday, March 20, 2010

CD Odyssey Disc 108: Megadeth

The Islands of Bad Production behind us, it was time to take a sharp turn from folk back to metal.

Disc 108 is...So Far, So Good...So What!
Artist: Megadeth

Year of Release: 1988

How I Came To Know It: Sheila bought me this album for my birthday, knowing that I had enjoyed "Peace Sells" (which I reviewed way back at Disc 8).

How It Stacks Up: I only have two Megadeth albums, but I'll probably get a third at some point. Of the two, this is the weaker one.

Rating: 3 stars.

Once again Megadeth delivers a great album name. Nothing so aptly sums up Dave Mustaine's nihilistic world view like "So Far, So Good...So What!" Having said that, if I were naming this album I think I'd punctuate with a period - the exclamation point is a bit much. Ah, the exclamation point - so often abused. And for what! For what!?!

But I digress...

This album is principally known for the remake of the Sex Pistols' "Anarchy in the UK". As remakes go, this is a pretty good one, and I actually prefer it to the original (I'm not much of a Sex Pistols fan, though).

I also really love the music in "In My Darkest Hour" which really puts Mustaine's ability to write killer guitar licks on display. Just don't listen to the lyrics, which are not just awful, but bordering on pathetic. Mustaine comes off as a sullen teenager who has just been dumped by his girfriend. "First Metallica, and now this? How much rejection can I squeeze into these tight jeans?" OK - that's not a lyric from the song, but it might as well be.

While the best songs on this album aren't as good as those on "Peace Sells" I think the overall quality of the songs might actually be a bit higher through the lesser tracks. For this reason I gave it a three as well.

The production on this CD is excellent and arguably better than "Peace Sells", although it is another remastered album where the artist felt the need to add a bunch of extra tracks. In this case, the extra tracks are four songs ("Into the Lungs of Hell", "Set the World Afire", "Mary Jane" and "In My Darkest Hour") redone with the "Paul Lani Mix".

Frankly, the "Paul Lani Mix" doesn't sound noticeably different from the original mix, and yet fully half of the albums eight tracks get this treatment. It is excessive.

Anyway, this album isn't an all time classic, but it has its moments.

Best tracks: Anarchy In the UK, In My Darkest Hour

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