Megadeth

Th1rt3en

by Noel Edge

In 5 Words or Less

No luck needed for Th1rt3en!

Value

Paid $11 (iTunes version) » Worth $10

Affiliation with KNEW GEN

None

Explicit?

No

Genre and Mood

Metal / Hard Rock

Notable Tracks

"Sudden Death" [Megapowerful], "Public Enemy No. 1" [you won't be able to get this one out of your head], "Never Dead" [lots of rippin guitar work], "Guns, Drugs & Money" [and tons of groove], "Deadly Nightshade" [with Inagodadavida-like overtones] and "Whose Life (Is it Anayways?)" [good punk feel]

Songwriting & Musicianship

I bought the early release of "Sudden Death" when it came out on iTunes and it ripped. So when the album came out I was pumped. But aside from a couple of tracks, I wasn't sure that I was sold on the album. Not many tunes jumped out at me or stuck in my head. My review process however, involves multiple listens prior to posting. No, I didn't need to listen to it 13 times, but it did take 3 or 4 turns before the album formed some kind of "metal mold" on my brain (very similar to my experience with "Youthanasia"). There are a couple of subpar tunes on the album, but otherwise it kicks! And unlike some other albums and EPs I've heard over the last while, Dave Mustaine and Megadeth have stayed true to a winning formula: less is more...and in this case, Megamore! It baffles me why some bands feel the need to construct 20 part songs, have them go in a completely different direction half way through (i.e. when they should end) and carry on for 7 or 8 minutes (or longer). Not with Th1rt3en: soon after the tunes peak, they end (they average 4 to 4 1/2 minutes long) - and that's when they should end.

Shawn Drover is solid on drums. Good all around use of the kit and speedy double bass (check out Never Dead and the last half of New World Order). David Ellefson is back on bass...finally (no offense to previous players)! Just listen to his work on Never Dead - nuf said. What really stands out on this album though (live previous albums), is the guitar work. Dave Mustaine and Chris Broderrick blaze through intricate riffs and leads on every track (check out Sudden Death, Never Dead and Black Swan"). Unbelievable!

Production

Johnny K. and Megadeth did an excellent job producing this album. It's very well mixed (you can detect any instrument at any time) and the overall sound, while refined, retains raw edge. The kick drums and toms have deep round tones. The snare and symbols are crisp. A great ring and slight buzz drive the bass guitar sound home. The guitars are crunchy and have a "live" feel to them (they're not overproduced).

What Else You Should Know

I'm lookin forward to seeing Megadeth at Madison Square Garden later this month on the Gigantour. One criticism I've heard over the years is that Megadeth is not all that entertaining live. I disagree. Admittedly, fans don't get the spectacle that is a Kiss or Rob Zombie concert when they go to see Megadeth, but true fans don't expect that. For me, Megadeth live is an opportunity to rock-out and watch them (especially Dave Mustaine) put on a clinic of Rush-like proportions. As a guitarist (who is also a lead singer - try playing guitar and singing their tunes simultaneously), I think Dave Mustaine is highly underrated. I've never heard his name mentioned in conversations about the most talented metal guitar-gods. It's a travesty, because he's clearly an elite player. Just go to a gig and watch him play!

Contact Noel at noeledge@knewgeneration.com