This is the album that permanently changed the way I thought thrash metal should be practiced. Yes, I had heard Metallica before, but this was it. The adrenaline rush in the breakdown and buildup sections of Holy Wars…The Punishment Due, the pure unadulterated catchiness of Tornado of Souls…..this is the essential thrash album. If there are only three thrash albums that you ever have to own, then they have to be Reign in Blood, Master of Puppets and this one. While the atonal hardcore leanings of Slayer gave rise to death, and the symphonic thrash stylings of Metallica continued the chapters of progressive rock, Rust in Peace’s pure thrash catchiness and melodic lead solos captured the essence of thrash – fun and loving it. If there is a true successor to Iron Maiden’s The Number of the Beast, then this has to be it, especially if you hear tracks like Hangar 18.
Megadeth has never been a very consistent band, in fact I would be hard put to name any Megadeth album that I can hear in one go, including this one. Tracks like Take No Prisoners are fun but showcase the side of Megadeth that I don’t really dig that much. It reminds me of Judas Priest in the British Steel era, and I am not talking of Breaking the Law either. I am talking of songs like United. Therefore we have drop in quality in the middle of the album with tracks which are almost consumed alive by the rest of the brilliant tracks. Notwithstanding all of that, even Dave Mustaine accepts that this was his band’s high point. If anyone of you are interested check out the Big 4 Concert DVD held in Sofia, Bulgaria.
Now that I have named almost every metal album that I have ever heard, I can conclude this review.
Recommended Tracks – Holy Wars…The Punishment Due, Hangar 18, Tornado of Souls, Rust in Peace.Polaris, Dawn Patrol.