CD review MEGADETH ‘Warheads on Foreheads’

(*/10) The moment Dave Mustaine and Metallica partedways not that many metalheads could predict a such successful career of the guitarist. I guess almost no one would have said that Mustaine will start an own band that’s still around after more then three decades. 

Mustaine, together with Dave Ellefson, Greg Handevist and Dijon Carruthers, represented the first Megadeth line-up. The quartet started in 1984, a time when heavy metal gained momentum. Handevidt left the band even before the first Megadeth shows took place and was replaced by no less than Kerry King. This line-up change was the first one but for sure not the last one. Megadethwent through all kinds of line-up changes over the years and great musicians as Marty Friedman and Al Pirelli have been part of the band. 

With a rich musical history in place Megadeth decided to sum up all the highlights out of more than three decades and put them on a release, celebrating the 35 years anniversary also. ‚Warheads on Foreheads‘ is the name of this 3-CDs featuring boxset that includes all the different phases of the band.

The quartet premiered in 1985 with ‚Killing is My Business‘ and it wasn’t an easy start. However, Mustaine and bandmates managed to record songs like Rattlehead’ and ‚Killing is My Business and Business is Good‘, two classics that kick-off this compilation.

After a rough start into their career it was the sophomore album ‚Peace Sells…But Who’s Buying‘ that was a first breakthrough for the band. This record doesn’t know a real weak spot and with ‚Wake Up Dead‘ and ‚Devil’s Island‘ two of these classics made it on ‚Warheads on Forehead‘. Also ‚The Conjuring‘ is taken from the iconic second album, but a song I miss for sure is the title track. ‚Peace Sells‘ is one of the best songs the band ever wrote and I really wonder why its missing here.

After ‚Peace Sells..But Who’s Buying‘ paved the way, budget increased for the next album and the musical success of Megadeth got bigger and bigger. The band cruised through the 90’s with excellent albums like ‚Countdown to Extinction‘ and ‚Youthanasia‘. It felt like the upcoming Grunge hype and Nu Metal peak couldn’t do any harm to Megadeth and their music. Songs like ‚Symphony of Destruction‘, ‚Rust in Peace‘ and „A Tout Le Monde’ are excellent metal smashers and timeless metal anthems.

After all these successful years some ‚wear marks‘ became obvious and Megadeth was a bit out of breath at the end of the ‚90s. ‚Risk‘ was and is the weakest longplayer in Megadeth’s history, but also this period found a spot on the tracklisting of this album. ‚Wanderlust‘ is the song that actually reminds more of Bon Jovi than Megadeth. However, this era is a part of Megadeth and it’s good that it’s part of this release.

After a two years hiatus Megadeth returned in 2004 with ‚The System Has Failed‘ and it was a strong one comeback album. ‚Blackmail the Universe‘ made it on this compilation and it showcases a band that’s back with full force. ‚Washington is Next‘ is the following song on this release, taken from the 2007 album ‚United Abomination‘. Speed- and Thrash Metal, that’s Megadeth and the rocking side tracks of ‚Risk‘ are belonging to past again. The final track is the title track of the latest Megadeth longplayer ‚Dystopia‘, published in 2016.

‘Warheads on Foreheads‘ is a 35 songs comprising summary of 35 years of Megadeth that includes many highlights and misses the great ‚Peace Sells‘.


(*/10)

Tracklist:

  1. Rattlehead
  2. Mechanix
  3. Killing is My Business and Business is Good
  4. The Conjuring
  5. Wake Up Dead
  6. Devil’s Island
  7. Good Morning
  8. Set the World Afire
  9. In My Darkest Hour
  10. Holy Wars
  11. Hangar 18
  12. Tornado of Souls
  13. Rust in Peace
  14. Five Magics
  15. Take No Prisoners
  16. Skin O’ My Teeth
  17. Angry Again
  18. Symphony of Destruction
  19. Sweating Bullets
  20. A Tout Le Monde
  21. Train of Consequences
  22. Reckoning Day
  23. Trust
  24. She Wolf
  25. Wanderlust
  26. Dread and the Fugitive Mind
  27. Blackmail the Universe
  28. Washington is Next
  29. Head Crusher
  30. Public Enemy No.1
  31. Kingmaker
  32. The Thread is Real
  33. Poisonous Shadows
  34. Death From Within
  35. Dystopia

Label: Universal Music

Genre: Thrash Metal

Release Date: March 22, 2019

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