Album Reviews

Megadeth – Warheads on Foreheads Review

Label: Universal Music

Genre: Thrash Metal

Release Date: March 22, 2019


Tracklist:

Rattlehead

Mechanix

Killing is My Business and Business is Good

The Conjuring

Wake Up Dead

Devil’s Island

Good Morning

Set the World Afire

In My Darkest Hour

Holy Wars

Hangar 18

Tornado of Souls

Rust in Peace

Five Magics

Take No Prisoners

Skin O’ My Teeth

Angry Again

Symphony of Destruction

Sweating Bullets

A Tout Le Monde

Train of Consequences

Reckoning Day

Trust

She Wolf

Wanderlust

Dread and the Fugitive Mind

Blackmail the Universe

Washington is Next

Head Crusher

Public Enemy No.1

Kingmaker

The Thread is Real

Poisonous Shadows

Death From Within

Dystopia



The moment Dave Mustaine and Metallica parted ways not that many metalheads could predict such a successful career of the guitarist. I guess almost no one would have said that Mustaine will start his own band that’s still around after more than three decades.

Mustaine, together with Dave Ellefson, Greg Handevist and Dijon Carruthers, represented the first Megadeth line-up. The quartet started in 1984, a time when heavy metal gained momentum. Handevidt left the band even before the first Megadeth shows took place and was replaced by no less than Kerry King. This line-up change was the first one but for sure not the last one. Megadeth went through all kinds of line-up changes over the years and great musicians as Marty Friedman and Al Pirelli have been part of the band.

With a rich musical history in place, Megadeth decided to sum up all the highlights out of more than three decades and put them on a release, celebrating the 35 years anniversary also. ‚Warheads on Foreheads‘ is the name of this 3-CDs featuring boxset that includes all the different phases of the band.

The quartet premiered in 1985 with ‚Killing is My Business‘ and it wasn’t an easy start. However, Mustaine and bandmates managed to record songs like Rattlehead’ and ‚Killing is My Business and Business is Good‘, two classics that kick-off this compilation.

After a rough start into their career, it was the sophomore album ‚Peace Sells…But Who’s Buying‘ that was a first breakthrough for the band. This record doesn’t know a real weak spot and with ‚Wake Up Dead‘ and ‚Devil’s Island‘ two of these classics made it on ‚Warheads on Forehead‘. Also ‚The Conjuring‘ is taken from the iconic second album, but a song I miss for sure is the title track. ‚Peace Sells‘ is one of the best songs the band ever wrote and I really wonder why it’s missing here.

After ‚Peace Sells…But Who’s Buying‘ paved the way, the budget increased for the next album and the musical success of Megadeth got bigger and bigger. The band cruised through the ’90s with excellent albums like ‚Countdown to Extinction‘ and ‚Youthanasia‘. It felt like the upcoming Grunge hype and Nu Metal peak couldn’t do any harm to Megadeth and their music. Songs like ‚Symphony of Destruction‘, ‚Rust in Peace‘ and „A Tout Le Monde’ are excellent metal smashers and timeless metal anthems.
After all these successful years some ‚wear marks‘ became obvious and Megadeth was a bit out of breath at the end of the ‚90s. ‚Risk‘ was and is the weakest longplayer in Megadeth’s history, but also this period found a spot on the tracklisting of this album. ‚Wanderlust‘ is the song that actually reminds more of Bon Jovi than Megadeth. However, this era is a part of Megadeth and it’s good that it’s part of this release.

After a two years hiatus, Megadeth returned in 2004 with ‚The System Has Failed‘ and it was a strong one comeback album. ‚Blackmail the Universe‘ made it on this compilation and it showcases a band that’s back with full force. ‚Washington is Next‘ is the following song on this release, taken from the 2007 album ‚United Abomination‘. Speed- and Thrash Metal, that’s Megadeth and the rocking side tracks of ‚Risk‘ are belonging to past again. The final track is the title track of the latest Megadeth longplayer ‚Dystopia‘, published in 2016.

Warheads on Foreheads‘ is 35 songs comprising a summary of 35 years of Megadeth that includes many highlights and misses the great ‚Peace Sells‘.



Written by: Markus Wiedenmann

Ratings:  (9/10)

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