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Month of Megadeth: Rust In Peace

Megadeth Rust in Peace album cover


A masterpiece. All of the Chinese five elements are in perfect harmony, just like with this masterpiece:

Serrana, by guitar prodigy Jason Becker. He took sweep picking - a technique made famous by Yngwie Malmsteen - to a whole new level during his illustrious career.


Rust in Peace reminds me of Taoism. The three jewels of the Tao, namely compassion, moderation and humility, have very little to do with most metal albums. Still, all the forces of the universe seem to be in perfect harmony when you listen to this album.

The truth about the Tao

Tao means path or way. This is the album where Megadeth clearly defined their path and went all the way too. By emphasising the link between people and nature, the need for rules and order is less pressing. Megadeth found a stable line-up for the first time, leading to a better understanding of their world and their surroundings.

Tao also means the flow of the universe, which is only achieved when things are in their natural order. Since So far, so good, so what? struggled to portray Megadeth in their natural order due to frequent line-up changes and more frequent drugs, a change was needed in order to cultivate the Tao.

How to De

De means active living, active cultivation of the Tao. Dave Mustaine did this by going through a 12 step program. Mike Muir of Suicidal Tendencies (don't feel bad if you don't know them, they're not great) once noted that Mustaine lived at the Betty Ford Center. This time, Mustaine was out long enough to cultivate the Tao. Yes, the force is strong with this one.

How to Wu Wei, or how to do by not doing

Wu Wei means action without action. The act of effortless doing managed to let some awesome music flow from these talented musicians.

Leah Dizon Japanese singer and hopefully a fan of the Necro Files

Leah Dizon, the Japanese star. Wa wa wee wee wu wei!

All the tensions of giving up alcohol and other drugs created a less tense environment. Loose enough for Mustaine to allow bassist David Ellefson to contribute some songs.
Loose enough for the band to be like water, flowing with the Tao. Soft enough to move a dried leaf, hard enough to shatter stone.

The truth about P'u, the uncarved block

P'u is the uncarved block. In this case, new drummer Nick Menza and new guitarist Marty Friedman are the uncarved blocks. Marty Friedman needs no introduction as a guitar hero, and his leads are superb. By employing the true nature of their minds, Megadeth becomes stronger without using effort.

Truly, the one album that proves where all the talent in Metallica was hidden. This is the sound of one hand tapping.

Useless information

  • Marty Friedman previously played in Cacophony with guitar prodigy Jason Becker. Their neo-classical feel and synchronised guitar harmonies took heavy metal guitar to a whole new level.

  • Dave Mustaine nearly didn't hire Marty Friedman, because he had too many colours in his hair. I guess a fiery red mane is more metal.

  • Jason Becker later played for David Lee Roth. He became diagnosed with the degenerative disease amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and doctors gave him three years to live. Jason is still alive and well today, enjoying the envy of many guitar heroes and fans despite being in a wheel chair and unable to play guitar any more.

  • "Hangar 18" is one of my favourite songs of all time.

  • The title Rust in Peace refers to an anti-nuclear program bumper sticker Dave Mustaine had read. It supports the notion that nuclear warheads should rust in peace.

This is part of the month of Megadeth series on the Necro Files. All the posts of the series are listed below:

Track listing

  1. Holy Wars… the Punishment Due

  2. Hangar 18

  3. Take No Prisoners

  4. Five Magics

  5. Poison Was the Cure

  6. Lucretia

  7. Tornado of Souls

  8. Dawn Patrol

  9. Rust in Peace... Polaris

Note: The 2004 remixed and remastered version has bonus tracks which I omitted because I do not own that version. You can find the details of those tracks at the All Music Guide review of Rust in Peace.



five awesome rating skulls top heavy metal albums and horror movies get five skulls in the review


Stanley said…
Rust in Peace is such a great album! man, I havnt heard it in years, . . . I'll have to go find it!
machinehuman said…
I used to listen to this album every single day after school. Great review.
Carson F. Ball said…
Tornado of Souls and Hangar 18 have some of the best guitar work that I have ever heard. Dawn patrol is such an odd song stylistically that I can't help loving it. This is definitely one of their best albums.

I really enjoy your series on Megadeth and look forward to seeing more.

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