Friday, September 10, 2010

Music Review: Megadeth - Rust In Peace Live (CD + DVD)

Between Megadeth lead singer/guitarist Dave Mustaine's recently released memoir, lead guitarist Chris Broderick's Guitar World columns, and another mammoth world tour by the band itself, fans have certainly had some golden opportunities to get their fill of the heavy metal titans this year.

The original 22-show long North American leg of the 2010 Megadeth World Tour in March provided a special treat for longtime fans, a live performance of the band's entire seminal Rust In Peace album, which celebrates its 20th anniversary this year. Several other classics rounded each live set, of course.

The sold out March 31 show at the Hollywood Palladium was filmed and recorded, and now this week, released on CD, DVD and Blu-ray as Rust In Peace Live (on Shout! Factory). This review looks at the CD and DVD options.


A live recording that is 74 minutes long seems like a long concert. But with a fast-paced metal band like Megadeth, an hour and approximately fifteen minutes of ripping rifftastic metal goes by in a flash and leaves you wanting more. That is, of course, a good thing.

An audience of mostly young males leads the "ME-GA-DETH!" chants shortly before Dave Mustaine graces the stage to say "Good evening," a few more words, and then gets right down to business with the rest of the four-man clan.

The one-two punch of "Holy Wars ... The Punishment Due" and (the UFO-themed) "Hangar 18," followed by the war-based "Take No Prisoners" is a relentless trio of metal classics unmatched by any other opening set of songs in the band's catalog. And the sell-out hometown Los Angeles crowd ate up every bit of it.

The engineering and mixing of this performance is outstanding, as the listener is able to hear all instruments evenly, and also pick up various audience chants and sing-alongs very clearly. Take "Hangar 18," where the crowd spontaneously shouts "ME-GA-DETH!" along to drummer Shawn Drover's three accented beats during the extended solo section.

The only (minor) issue one could pick out is the lack of volume on the backup vocals to (personal favorite) "Tornado of Souls," which was otherwise a showstopper in and of itself here. But that was perhaps due to the way founding Megadeth bassist David Ellefson sang them more than the way it was mixed (by Ryan Greene). By the way, after being away for several years, Ellefson rejoined the band he co-founded shortly before the tour, and he sounded right at home throughout. At one point in the show, you could even hear a fan yell out "Welcome back!"

This is an excerpt of an article that was first published in full at Blogcritics Magazine

No comments: