Sunday, March 29, 2015

Megadeth - United Abominations (2007)

After the successful comeback to the thrash sound in "The System Has Failed", Dave had gotten himself a complete line up for the new album, the 2007 release "United Abominations". Besides from Dave himself, we have the brothers Glen and Shawn Drover that took care of the guitar and drum work, and also James LoMenzo who became the bassist. We also have a updated Vic Rattlehead in the cover with the hair that resembles of the dub step artist Skrillex. Not the coolest of hair styles, but it was a part of a fan competition to reinvent the mascot and Dave seemed to like it (he chose that one over the actual fan voted winner by the way).

This album takes the band another step forward in making the band sound heavier and it is probably the most provocative record yet written by Mustaine. Songs about the American government, the UN and tons of other stuff, all just to stir the pot up, as Dave himself has said. It is nothing surprising that Dave is doing it since he has always been that kind of guy, and to be honest, some of his best lyrical work comes from him being pissed off, which also goes with the music.

The album starts off in the best way possible, with a fast, thrashing tune that is filled with meaty riffs and solos. That song is "Sleepwalker" and it is one of the best songs Megadeth has done since their original thrash era. It could be that the lyrics about a man that kills people in his sleep has a B-movie stamp all over it, but the music is top notch and catchy. The overall start of "United Abominations" is just fantastic, continuing with the groovy "Washington Is Next!", the provocative title track, and the heavy "Gears of War", a track that was written for the video game with the same name.

I am not saying that the second half of the album is much worse than the first, but it does have more slip ups, the biggest one being the re-recorded version of  the "Youthanasia" song "Á Tout Le Monde". There is no good reason to do this and put it in the standard set list of the album. I could have accepted it as a bonus in some kind of deluxe version, but it is just obvious that Dave and the band's new record company, Roadrunner Records, wanted as much money as possible out of this product. The song itself is slightly faster than the original and it also features a guest appearance by Lacuna Coil singer Cristina Scabbia, who does a decent job, but it is not enough to even get close to the beautiful original.

So besides from that unnecessary re-recording, this album kicks ass. "United Abominations" is the most bad ass Megadeth album in almost 20 years and I would say that they have almost completely made up for the albums that was created in the 90's. With a good, strong line-up that is ready to shred until they bleed and a anger that is more or less unstoppable, Megadeth is ready to enter its second golden age with force and determination.

Songs worthy of recognition: Sleepwalker, Washington Is Next!, United Abominations, Play For Blood

Rating: 8,5/10 Amerikhastans

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