Megadeth - Endgame (Roadrunner)

It’s official boys and girls: After more than a decade of glass is half empty releases, Mr. Mustaine has found his [previously lost] mojo.

The moment Dialectic Chaos erupts in a flurry of smoking leads, it seems the heavens have parted for the Good Lord to shine his blessings on Megadeth, thereby allowing the band to reach speeds not unheard of since Rust In Peace. No bullshit, no empty praise, no blind fan boy worship—this album has been met with acclaim everywhere. A few fuckos may still have grimaced, but for the rest of us who abide by the thrash metal textbook written by ex-junkie and devout Born Again Christian Dave Mustaine, this Endgame is a high point in Megadeth’s storied career.

Keeping matters deadly, This Day We Fight! is an ear-creaming, riff-stacular speed monster that’s also beefed up by neck breaking percussion, razor-sharp guitars, and the return of Mustaine’s snarl. The man is in fine form throughout, and when the first song wraps, the tempos ease for the infectious blow by blow crime caper that’s 44 Minutes. The song recounts a bank robbery gone awry where the two gunmen engage LA’s finest in a bullet riddled 44 minute gun battle. In Mustaine’s hands it becomes an epic tale that serves up the drama with a huge memorable chorus and great hooks.

NASCAR racing, President Bush’s plan to make America safe, the Wall Street meltdown, frustrated nine- to-five punters,  spurned lovers, and a torture device are all given Mustaine’s lyrical treatment; and, to our endless delight, the finished product is always a good tune.

What really makes Endgame such a winner is with a solid (not to mention utterly obedient) lineup behind him, including guitar whiz Chris Broderick, Mustaine invests the time and energy to writing rock solid material. For Megadeth fans who’ve been locked in a decades-long love-hate relationship with this speediest of speed metal bands, Endgame inspires widespread affection.

Megdeth's Endgame is out now on Roadrunner Records.