Register Forgot login?

© 2002-2014
Encyclopaedia Metallum

Best viewed
without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
or higher.

Metallica, your credibility may rust in peace. - 99%

Nazareth, July 5th, 2004

The above quote was most likely said when one Dave Mustaine first listened to the mastered intro to Holy Wars. As the topic says, this is the album that completely destroyed anything Metallica put out, save Ride The Lightning. Where other thrash bands, such as Dark Angel, went for sheer speed and hitting power, Megadeth went for a middle ground. The result? Total fucking thrash.

This album, along with Painkiller, completely rock any other album released in 1990, 1978, or any album, really. Dave Mustaine, walking out of the above average rubble which was So Far..., needed to step things up a level. Jay Young was kicked out, and Marty Friedman was brought in. The rest, as they say, is ownage.

Starting off with the killer track Holy Wars, the bar of standards is set very high as the now infamous intro riff kick in, giving somewhat Western/Deserty feeling. The lyrics are great, and could easily be transformed into an Indiana Jones movie. The music, well, is near flawless. The production is a tad shoddy, but the riffs are superb. The solos sweep and slay at the same time, and really show Marty Friedman's effiency playing the six strings. The final solo section shreds, rips, tears, and brutalizes most solos recorded before that. Mustaine and Friedman can keep up with the likes of Vai and Satriani. Hangar 18 kicks in, with a chord progression, power metally feeling. A drum fill here and there, alternate riffs once or twice, and then the lyrics kick in. Concerning with Hangar 18, NOT Area 51, as most people believe. More very proficient guitars, and Dave is still give an excellent vocal performance. Dave's voice is strange, and while it is an acquired taste, it completely owns if you like it at first. The soloing section is the Valley of the Damned of its time, bringing you everywhere on the fretboard, and very fucking fast, might I add.

I just want to compliment Mustaine and Friedman for their work on the riffs, they're excellent, and very bountiful.

Take No Prisoners, it's an uncensored ball kicker of a song. Frantic drumming, but the guitars sound a bit muffled. Still, lightning quick speed, and great drumming. Dave vocals kick a generous amount of ass, as do the backing vocals as he sings, sounds like Glen Benton were doing backing vocals! A very short bass interlude, just leads into more mind-numbing speed and guitar onslaught. Very strong drumming on this track, a solo that's short and gets to the point. Although, it does perform the action of stabbing your mother in the face and slapping her in the stomach quite well. Once again, Five Magics, all out thrasher. For a while it slows you down with bass interludes, sounds somewhat progressive. Heh, maybe they got the idea from Metallica wrongfully dubbing ...AJFA. The speed picks up to another stop, and POW. Vocals kick in, with some soloing inbetween each verse, very good, fast, and the riffs are juicy, thick, and overall crushing. What was a progressive song turns into a kick your ass with an iron boot thrash song. The backing vocals once again sound like Glen Benton, might I add. The main solos kick in, and it sounds like Herman Li. Christ. Look at everything this album inspired.*

In comes Poision Was The Cure, and it sort of has three sections. Thirty seconds of build up on a clean guitar, and some distortion comes in. After a minute, it's once again a thrash-beat down. What can I say besides the usual. Great track, would be the highlight on any Metallica album. Very strong drumming, as usual, and the outro solos once again spit on all your heads. Lucretia comes in, and awe inspiring intro guitar is put down. Arguably Mustaine's best vocal performance is found on this song, and the drumming, while not as crazy and frenetic on the previous tracks, do indeed provide a backbone stronger than anything Lars Ulrich would ever put out. The ending solos sound similiar to Tornado of Souls solos, in a way.

Speak of the Devil! Tornado of Souls, the song we all know and love. Kicks in with a punch to the face, and a chugging riff leading to some excellent scale. This, my friends, is Megadeth. Best drumming for 'Deth is found here, best riffs, solos, basswork, and drumming is here. Again they hit you with the same excellent scale of whose name is unknown to me. This time, Mustaine is wailing the lyrics into the mic, better than most everyone else. This, ladies and gentlemen, is thrash. When I wrote the review for Ride The Lightning, I was blind to the realms of other bands. Back to ToS, the solos in it, probably the best solos I've ever heard. Not in the technicality, which I'm sure they rank somewhere between "extremely hard" and "I'd rather play a game of Rochambeau (South Park) than try and learn this." The lyrics inspire you to be a bastard, show no mercy, return the actions of others, and make them pay for what they have done to you. That, my friends, is thrash fucking metal.

Dawn Patrol is pointless, although the bass work is great sounding.

Did Nick Menza and Scott Travis just sit around all day thinking, "Gee, I wonder how we can take drums, the instrument everyone overlooks, and make everyone shit themselves over it." The results? Painkiller and Rust in Peace . . . Polaris. The riffs are very technical. mid-tempo, and deliver blows to all who dare listen. The song, "ends." Just to kick in again with the draw of a blade. Same basic sound, and then the solos kick in. They sound similar to Hangar 18, and that is only good. The tempo is picked up, and the drumming just keeps on getting more solid, with flashier fills and the like. Ending vocals, the closure of the giant, and fucking ALL OUT DEATH GROWLS IN THE END.

Overall, quite possibly the best combination of intensity and technicality to be found. Dave Mustaine, where ever you are, be it church, the supermarkert, your sons baseball games, whatever, you are a God for making the album.