Author Topic: Endgame  (Read 748 times)

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Offline The Ancient Warrior

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« on: September 15, 2009, 07:36:54 PM »
So here it is.  I've heard this album was really good from a number of different reviews, so I decided to test it out and see.  I listened to almost every track at least twice in a row to really absorb it.  Here's a breakdown of my thoughts track-by-track:

Dialectic Chaos? It's a very nice opening instrumental, I think.  I LOVE the lead guitars on this one, and it's fairly rhythmic as far as post-hiatus Megadeth goes.  It sounds a little too much like a bonus track from The System Has Failed, though, but it's very well-put-together.  9/10.

This Day We Fight!? Listen to Chris Broderick shred! He did better than Chris Poland, Marty Friedman or Glen Drover could with the lead guitar riffs on this track.  I'm glad I can also hear James LoMenzo's bass line very clearly at several points (a nice element of Megadeth's sound that sets them apart).  I also like how "Dialectic Chaos" flowed directly into this one; it was a nice creative idea, though the only drawback is this track doesn't seem to be able to stand alone quite as well, just as a result of where the split was.  9/10.

44 Minutes? The generally slow intro was a nice way to build up energy again after such a huge impact.  This one has a much more distinct sound to it than the ones before it, though, and again, LoMenzo's bass is easy to hear (it should be, since it's the real foundation of any song).  10/10!

1,320'? It seems that out of the two prereleased tracks, a lot more people preferred "Head Crusher" to this one, but for me it was vice versa.  This one has a lot of energy to it and it's an interesting subject matter, what with the lyrics based around drag racing.  I could visualize a mad dash for the finish line as the music picked up the pace after the lyrics ended, too.  Nice construction all around, basically.  10/10!

Bite The Hand? Admittedly, this one doesn't seem to jump out at me as much as the others.  Excellent solo, cool bass and drum lines, but it just didn't click with me quite as well for some reason. 9/10.

Bodies? Let the bodies hit the floor? Not quite.  The title was shortened from "Bodies Left Behind," apparently.  I thought it sounded kinda like "Tears In A Vial" from The System Has Failed combined with the title track to United Abominations, sadly, but LoMenzo's bass still shines through, at least.  This was actually the only track I heard only once, but really, nothing stood out.  8/10.

Endgame? The title track and the longest on the album, falling just short of six minutes.  The lyrics are about possible follow-ups to the Patriot Act? if that's just one way the government's going to invade our privacy and violate the Bill of Rights, what's next? Mandatory microchip installation which, if refused, could get you thrown in jail? The lyrics really make you think and are as politically charged as ever, and the song turned out great as a result of that and the instruments sounding excellent. 10/10!

The Hardest Part Of Letting Go... Sealed With A Kiss? This song follows a similar construction to "Holy Wars... The Punishment Due" off 1990's Rust In Peace.  That is, it's a song within a song; it begins as "The Hardest Part Of Letting Go," switches to "Sealed With A Kiss" and then switches back.  However, it's reversed from "Holy Wars... The Punishment Due" in that the "The Hardest Part Of Letting Go" is acoustic and "Sealed With A Kiss" is the usual heaviness.  The lyrics? Think "Tornado Of Souls"? it's another love song, only with a darker, more twisted sense to it rather than just the misery of "Tornado Of Souls." Either way, it's very clever.  10/10!

Head Crusher? The first prereleased track, the generally preferred prerelease and the first single off the album ("1320' " never was made into a single, but I hear it's getting a video).  Looking at its placement in the album, the song, with its insanely high-pitched-lead-guitar-fronted intro, totally tore right through the poignant acoustic outro of "The Hardest Part Of Letting Go... Sealed With A Kiss." :lol: It's a solid song, but I think it's slightly overrated.  Either way, I still give it a 9/10.

How The Story Ends? Defying all logic, this is actually the penultimate song on the album, not the last.  Overlaying an acoustic guitar solo by Dave and some sound effects in the instrumental part was an interesting twist which I think was meant to symbolize a fairytale ending.  The bass and drums were kickass here, and the idea of "They can't all be happy endings" (an ending to the earth, plunged in anarchy and war, in this case) was a nice one for the lyrics.  10/10!

The Right To Go Insane? The home stretch! The line "I got nothing left to lose, but my sanity and the right to go insane" exemplifies people's moods about the economy right now; the lyrics focus on how difficult it is to make enough money to get by.  The song is pretty reminiscent of the older material in that there's a long solo after the lyrics cut out.  I really liked it, and I thought it was a strong way to finish out the album.  10/10!

So, my final thoughts? Well, it's a great album, there's no doubt about that.  Even details like the album artwork were excellent.  The big thing I noticed is that the overall sound seems to have stagnated, however.  I like when a band is constantly evolving, and Megadeth used to have it where each album sounded noticeably different from the last.  Youthanasia didn't sound like Countdown To Extinction, which set itself apart from Rust In Peace, and so on.

However, I didn't find that happening as much with the post-hiatus material.  Ever since Megadeth reunited in 2004 after their two-year break, each album sounds pretty similar.  I mean, don't get me wrong, it sounds excellent, but it could stand to be a little more unique compared to The System Has Failed and United Abominations.  The biggest things that stuck out for me were James LoMenzo's bass becoming a lot easier to hear and Chris Broderick, the best lead guitarist Megadeth has had to date, though some tracks sound kinda like leftovers from the two albums before.

Nevertheless, this was still a great listen and I loved it.  I'd totally get it if I were you.
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Offline Asian Legends Fan

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« Reply #1 on: September 15, 2009, 11:31:31 PM »
Wow, it's out already? I'll be sure to get a copy of it when I pass by the Rose Records Shop tomorrow morning on the way to school. Believe it or not, the schoolbus will drop me off there and let me walk the rest of the way to school... It's been done when I bought Viva la Vida last year. :lol:
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