Release Date: January 22, 2016
Label: Tradecraft / Universal
When you talk about Megadeth, the topic usually ends up in Dave Mustaine’s rather interesting comments about his past bandmates and all. He just cannot stop talking about ex-members. Well, maybe only when he is not talking about Metallica. To be sincere, I had little hope about Dystopia and was pretty sad when I heard Kiko Loureiro of Angra joined the band, hoping this on-going nonsense wouldn’t hurt him as an artist.
Well, time passed and Dystopia came out. I will say it out loud and it will be blunt and it will be brutal for me to accept. I was wrong. Not about the drama part, but about Dystopia. Perhaps, because I wasn’t expecting anything even remotely mediocre, Dystopia punched me in the face and knocked me out cold for good. This album is probably the best album since Cryptic Writings. Hell, it may even be considered as a follow-up to that epic trilogy. I am talking about Rust in Peace, Countdown to Extinction and Youthanasia. Where there were tears of pain and agony, now there is happiness and headbanging. I am talking about the review process. I was literally crying in pain when listening to their 2013 release, Super Collider. You figure the surprise. And I am pretty “wide” when it comes to Megadeth. Let me clarify it by saying this; I like Risk. There, I said it.
I cannot be sure how much Kiko Loureiro (Angra) and Chris Adler (Lamb of God) added to this album in means of composition, but damn this album is good. As in, seriously good. For the last two spins, I am trying to find something bad to tell about it and I only found myself disliking two tracks. That is normal, it is a personal thing on this level. Guitar performance was always good with Megadeth, that is a fact, but there is something extra here. Same goes for drums. I always liked Menza’s style and I am a huge fan of Marty Friedman but if something is good, then it is good. I also liked Chris Broderick but I preferred him with Jag Panzer. Seems like Megadeth has “finally” found its niche. That is, until Mustaine decides to talk about his band members and does something “dramatic” again. After all, we are talking about a band which the two oldest members had 18.5 million dollars’ worth of “misunderstanding” in between them. I am talking about the Ellefson – Mustaine dispute of 2004.
Anyway, Dystopia has epic drumming, epic guitar work, really solid thrash metal songs with proper structures and melodies. The sound and notes picked for the album suit the title. I am not sure if I am digging the album cover. I prefer the old, traditional art style but maybe that’s just me. If you are fan of Rust in Peace, Countdown to Extinction and Youthanasia, this album will suit your loooooong time needs of something properly Megadeth. Highly recommended. You can listen to first five tracks for sampling. Well, listen to them all while you are at it. Alright, if you are feeling a bit lazy, why not start by listening / watching to the two videos released by the band at the end of this review?
God, I never thought a day would come that I grade a Megadeth album this high. Maybe except for some remasters. I am shed to tears by Megadeth, yet again, but with joy this time.
Dave Mustaine – Vocals, guitars
Kiko Loureiro – Guitars
David Ellefson – Bass
Chris Adler – Drums