Rust In Peace
Review by Luka on February 22, 2002.
In creating the very album that defined Megadeth, Dave Mustaine finally hits home with a solid line-up that truly works, and one that would shape the path of the band for the better part of the 90’s. With his unique, technical rhythm clashing with guitar legend Marty Friedman’s outrageous lead, it’s clear that this album was destined to become a heavy metal classic. The legendary "Hangar 18" carries a phenomenal 3-minute Friedman/Mustaine solo, interrupted by crunchy riffs which really pushes the limits of metal and guitarwork!
While maybe not as violent as 1986’s thrashy "Peace Sells...", this was the album that truly pushed the energy and creativity of Megadeth to its full potential and remains as the most powerful and memorable opus in their career. Being the last cover graced with grotesque mascot Vic Rattlehead, this album also symbolizes the end of Megadeth’s thrash metal pursuit, and the eventual loosening of the reins that would result in the following albums’ more mainstream approach.
I’m glad that this time the producer had his head on straight after the catastrophe on the last album. The guitars are done extra crisp while the melody is sharp and creates a dark atmosphere in tracks like 'Five Magics' and 'Lucretia'. The songs are arranged perfectly, a seemingly chaotic yet structured composition of fast riffs, outrageous solos, and complex layers of guitar harmony. After the climax of the song you’re left absolutely speechless, you just can’t ask for more.
Dave’s lyrics are as intelligent and entertaining as ever. Aside a few naive concepts like 'Hangar 18', the themes are an amusing, cut-the-bull type approach to politics, faults of society, and, of course, his own turbulent life. If you thought that songs like 'Holy Wars' were old news, just look at today’s situation with Afghanistan, the theme of middle-eastern conflict is more meaningful today than back when the song was written.
Bottom Line: This is the album that truly put Megadeth on the map. No less than a masterpiece! Every metal fan in the world should have this in their collection!
Categorical Rating Breakdown
Rating: 10 out of 10