Sound — 8
Megadeth have always had different line ups through the years. Some were good. Some were great and some were absolutely stellar, like the Friedman and Ellefson years, which were some of their best. On EndGame, Megadeth and their fearless leader Dave Mustaine have solidified their most cohesive, shred-a-rifffic roster in years. New axe Chris Broderick is like a jolt of adrenaline to the Megadeth bloodstream, and he shreds his ass off alongside the inimitable Mr. Mustaine. Megadeth (and Mustaine, even though the two are interchangeable at this point) haven't sound this pissed off, with this much venom dripping from their chins, in years. We like it. But more importantly, metal and Megadeth fans will love it. Opening with the instrumental Dialectic Chaos and launching with the warhead that is This Day We Fight!, EndGame comes out of the gates, with all guns held high and blazing, never missing their targets. Mustaine and his crew clearly realize, like Tom Cruise's Maverick in Top Gun, that metal fans feel the needfor speed. Never once does that band apply the brakes on this trash attack of epic proportions. To say that EndGame is a return form would imply, indicate and insinuate that the band has been missing a step in recent years, when it hasn't. 2007's United Abominations was a quality album and EndGame follows it up with the same amount of ferocity. 44 Minutes offers a menacing guitar tone, while Headcrusher sounds like Mustaine has been carrying around the song in his arsenal since 1986, saving it till it accrued enough interest to make the most impact when he unleashed it upon the unsuspecting world. Bite the Hand is another album that straddles the line between the classic and modern thrash eras. Simply put, EndGame is the Megadeth fans want and need in 2009.
Lyrics — 8
Mustaine's got a gift for wordplay, turns of phrase and political phraseology that makes you think beyond the initial meaning. EndGame is inspired by a document that was signed during the Bush administration do your research if you want to know more and educate yourself- and Mustaine wove the album around that particular piece of governmental trickery. Mustaine is a smart lyricist and wordsmith who is informed about things beyond the nightly news so if you want to do a little thinking, you can get the seeds of info from songs like Bodies and the title track and then learn a little bit more on your own. If that isn't the hallmark of good music, then nothing else can be! Dave's just leading you to the water it's up to you to drink. His gritted-teeth delivery is as chilling and ominous as ever, too. He still sounds young and vengeful.
Overall Impression — 9
Metal flows through Mustaine's and Megadeth's veins. EndGame is just another piece of evidence that displays this fact. It's one of the band's best of their modern era and this decade, and will veritably find a place amongst the metal canon, when we look back at this album in ten or 15 years.