Thirteen Not Unlucky for Megadeth

Posted on November 10, 2011


by Sam Stowe

 Thirteen albums into their storied career, heavy metal legends Megadeth have struck gold once again.

Opening with the thunderous Sudden Death, loaded with pounding drums and virtuoso guitars, Dave Mustaine, the creative force and main songwriter of the band, once again displays how his band have earner their legendary status.

 Compared to the bands last release, 2009’s critically acclaimed Endgame, TH1RT3EN is a decidedly less heavy affair. While still undoubtedly a metal album, the band have traded the super technical riffs for a more hard rock oriented style. Lead single Public Enemy No. 1 is a great example of this with its simple guitar riff and almost sing-a-long vocals.

 This isn’t Megadeth’s first foray into lighter territory. Mustaine experimented with a more radio-friendly sound in the ‘90s, earning them a number 2 album with 1992’s double platinum Countdown to Extinction and five Grammy nominations. So it’s no surprise to see that some of the songs included on TH1RT3EN were originally penned almost 20 years ago. New World Order and Millennium of the Blind never made it past the demo stage the first time around, but reworked and re-recorded versions included here are highlights of the album.

 There are still a few thrashy songs here, such as the amazing Never Dead, with a slow building intro bursting into one of the best Megadeth riffs in years. The song also features a great, hooky chorus that could see it becoming a staple in rock radio for a long time.

 When it comes to the content of the songs, the album doesn’t stray too far from what is expected of Megadeth. Mustaine’s personal demons and addictions take a forefront, in songs like Guns, Drugs and Money and the heartfelt 13. Covering the political side of things We The People and New World Order, voicing Mustaine’s views on the state of American politics and his theories on the Illuminati.

 With TH1RT3EN, Megadeth have managed to create their most accessible release in years. Using simple song structures and more focus on hooks and melody rather than speed and technicality, all without sacrificing their core sound. Megadeth have created an album that will satisfy their rabid fan base and win over a few new fans in the process.