Peace Sells... But Who's Buying? review by Megadeth

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  • Released: Sep 19, 1986
  • Sound: 9
  • Lyrics: 9
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 9.3 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.4 (183 votes)
Megadeth: Peace Sells... But Who's Buying?
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Sound — 9
This is Megadeth's second, and to me, one of their most powerful releases. PSBWB picks up where Killing is My Business... left off, albeit with a improved production quality, and a bit of tameness added to songs. However, the thrash bite of their first album is not lost, and is improved with catchier lyrics and riff work, as well as more Megadeth trade-off solos.

Lyrics — 9
Pretty standard Megadeth tone to the lyrics. The topics, much like on Killing is My Business... , are varied and bear that dark, dethly tone to them, with topics rangeing from the occult, all the way towards politics and the general 'deth' attitude. Mustaine's singing hasn't exactly improved or worsened on the second album, and it's still one of those voices that you either like or hate. One thing I noticed though is their are less growls and yells than on Killing Is My Business, but that doesn't tone down the sheer aggressiveness and anger with Dave's voice. Also, you start to see more of Mustaine's trademark cynicalism in the track Peace Sells.

Overall Impression — 10
Compared to Metallica's second release, Ride the Lightning, I find the vocals more appealing to me, simply because Hetfield was still in his 'heavy mic reverb' stage, which was dropped on Master of Puppets. However, the release of Master of Puppets in the same year as Peace Sells really hurt the album, which is an album I think all thrash-lovers should give a listen to. This was the first Megadeth album I bought, as well as the first one I heard all the way through, and it was the one that got me hooked on Megadeth. I think the opening track 'Wake Up Dead' really opens the whole thing up with a nice punch to the face with it's heavy, but dark, riff work and solos. Also, I love Good Mourning... Black Friday, because, unlike Metallica's Fight Fire With Fire (what I consider the rough equivalent), it retains the album's general dark feel in it's opening licks, where Fight Fire With Fire adopts a classical sound that you don't really hear or feel much through the rest of the album. The only thing I was disappointed with was the fact that Gar's drumming just doesn't seem to shine out like it did on Killing is My Business... , which was a prime example of his drumming talents. If the album was stolen, I'd definately buy it again - I've owned my copy since around 2002 and have kept it in pretty good condition. I definately suggest this an album for those just starting to listen to Megadeth to check into, as it's a great example of their early thrash work. One of my favorite albums of all time.

37 comments sorted by best / new / date

    [x]Huffy[x]
    The*Reaper wrote: 80's metallica shits all over megadeth Mustaine was with Metallica up until Ride The Lightning which is a kick ass CD
    No he wasn't. Dave was kicked out shortly before Metallica recorded Kill Em All.
    BlisteringDDj
    BBoyBlaZe wrote: you guys wanna hear some thrash?...TESTAMENT..
    Sure, Testament is awesome but this has nothing to do with this..
    Mr Grumpy
    These comments are so funny.
    |\puto_rodas/| wrote:Metallica are just... a band.
    Like this, this is funny. You can be a maverick Megadeth lover, but I'm going to make the unnecessary and futile point of saying the Metallica isn't just a band. They are iconic and one of the most well known and recognized metal bands in the world (or at least in the USA). May not like it, most definitely won't care about this comment, but it's true. More people know more about metallica than megadeth. I won't take up any pointless "but a is better than b cause b is stupid" argument, just saying that metallica is not just a band.
    TheJudasKiss
    ChaosA.D.am wrote: Yeah, and there would be no Megadeth if he hadn't been kicked out. Dave's a front man.
    Dave Mustard is also a tit.
    Busproof
    trendkill- wrote: omg dude i love megadeth but come on this review is way to late,
    I just signed up recently, and wanted to review this album because its among my favorites If I could've done it sooner, would've in a heartbeat.
    Tw8xy
    Been a megadeth fan for 15 years as well as metallica blah blah. I just recently realised this is in my top 10 albums ever and i like a LOT of musical styles. After a long time i do consider Metallica to be more melodic and have dynamics but from a straight evil metal jazz element this is the best. I think the heroin use does impact styles..they were all smackheads!
    brentondig
    Hmmm. I'm close to saying this is my favourite Megadeth album. I can never pick a favourite out of the first four releases.
    Mr Grumpy
    Oh, and that was also unnecessary in its diversion from topic. This album is one my favorite megadeth albums, lots of fun bass lines.
    ulique
    rattlehead666's review was sooo terrible. seriously, how bias and monotonous was it? i cannot believe it's a featured review. terrible.
    edgeyyz
    People only say Metallica isn't as good as Megadeth because they fired Dave Mustaine, even though he had a drinking problem. Metallica is my favorite band, but Metallica wasn't ruined after Dave left, and it wasn't ruined when Cliff died either, just changed, and for the better in my opinion. Cliff was a much more influential and musically inclined member of Metallica anyways. Master of Puppets didn't ruin this album either, Reign in Blood was there too, and 1986 really helped all theree bands so much that nobody should complain. Thrash metal came out of its box more than ever before and made all three of these bands 10x more famous than they were before.
    Mr Grumpy wrote: These comments are so funny. |\puto_rodas/| wrote:Metallica are just... a band. Like this, this is funny. You can be a maverick Megadeth lover, but I'm going to make the unnecessary and futile point of saying the Metallica isn't just a band. They are iconic and one of the most well known and recognized metal bands in the world (or at least in the USA). May not like it, most definitely won't care about this comment, but it's true. More people know more about metallica than megadeth. I won't take up any pointless "but a is better than b cause b is stupid" argument, just saying that metallica is not just a band.
    Seeing that Metallica is the second best-selling album ever, and Megadeth is...I don't know, but you can't complain that Metallica is just a band. They are more than just a band, and quite possibly one of the most influential bands ever. Metal Up Your Ass Pansies. Long Live Thrash Metal (Metallica, Slayer, Megadeth, etc.)
    postmortem2006
    This is probably one of the bets albums ever. Every song is ****ing brilliant. p.s. To ShredNburN, Metallica aren't thrash.
    Froboarder
    mrianwatkins wrote: SERIALTRENDKILL wrote: Megadeth musical complexity blows Metallica away. The constant line-up change of absolute genius guitarists, from Chris Poland to Marty Freidman has kept Megadeth light years ahead of Metallica. Anyone who actually listens to music and doesnt hear it (like 99% of the people on this planet) knows that hands down. Not taking anything away from Metallica, they are great too. They are just nowhere near as intelligent as Dave Mustaine and all the guitarists he's had in his line-up over the years. I think Kirk Hammet did pretty damn good for being Satriani's "worst student". BTW Peace Sells is ridiculous. The musical complexity is so ridiculous, a lot of it even goes against music theory and it still sounds brilliant. Its no "1-2-3-4 now transition" type riff attack like Metallica so boringly uses, along with every other pop band on the planet. For example, the main solo in Peace Sells is 15 bars. Why not just make it 16? Because Dave doesn't give a ****. wow, seriously, wow. you've got me convinced. you obviously know nothing about music theory if you're claiming dave mustaine is an example of an intelligent guitar player.
    I don't like you. His solos may not be in the right scale (or any scale for that matter), but they're still really good and never fail to entertain my ears. Jimi Hendrix turned feedback into music. Does that make him an unintelligent guitar player, since it's not in theory? On topic, this is a really good album, number 4 on my list, behind 'The World Needs a Hero'
    Mr Grumpy
    Man you must be great friends with Hammett, Mustaine, and somehow still Hendrix because you sure know a whole lot about how much musical theory they know (knew) and how the write (wrote) it.
    mrrman
    Metal_Militia2 wrote: Just bought this album, it aint bad but How can you say these guys are better than Metallica?????
    because they are
    ShredNburN
    Megadeth and Metallica eternal argue.... They`re both great bands. They`re both thrash metal... You cant complain. Smart listeners will choose both... Dont be close-minded.... The only thing im ashamed of, is that Metallica let mtv cut their hair off. And you know what im talking about.... Justice for all, Metallica, but i`ll go for Megadeth all the way
    ShredNburN
    P.S. Kickass album, but my greatest has to be Rust In Peace, thank god for giving us Friedman.
    Bored to Tears
    I think this album is underrated on this site. I haven't heard the original album, but I have the remastered and I think it should be rated higher than 8.9. The only thing probably holding it back from being a perfect album, in my opinion, would be I Ain't Superstitious. I personally like the song, but it doesn't fit in with the rest of the album. Peace Sells should be 9.5 or higher I think.
    SERIALTRENDKILL
    wow, seriously, wow.
    you've got me convinced. you obviously know nothing about music theory if you're claiming dave mustaine is an example of an intelligent guitar player.
    Ok genius, I never said Dave was great at music theory (he knows nothing of music theory, un-like kirk whose theory can't even compare to Dave's insane ear for music) If you took a reading comprehension class in elementary school you'd of noticed that. I said Dave does not abide by any rules of music theory, he's just ridiculous because he does whatever he wants and its still unbelievable. Much like how Jimi Hendrix was, Hendrix was all over the place (watch his hands) but it still sounds unbelievable. Thats how you know a guitar player has it in their blood, and it's innate. When their ear is just that advanced.
    mrianwatkins
    SERIALTRENDKILL wrote: Megadeth musical complexity blows Metallica away. The constant line-up change of absolute genius guitarists, from Chris Poland to Marty Freidman has kept Megadeth light years ahead of Metallica. Anyone who actually listens to music and doesnt hear it (like 99% of the people on this planet) knows that hands down. Not taking anything away from Metallica, they are great too. They are just nowhere near as intelligent as Dave Mustaine and all the guitarists he's had in his line-up over the years. I think Kirk Hammet did pretty damn good for being Satriani's "worst student". BTW Peace Sells is ridiculous. The musical complexity is so ridiculous, a lot of it even goes against music theory and it still sounds brilliant. Its no "1-2-3-4 now transition" type riff attack like Metallica so boringly uses, along with every other pop band on the planet. For example, the main solo in Peace Sells is 15 bars. Why not just make it 16? Because Dave doesn't give a ****.
    wow, seriously, wow. you've got me convinced. you obviously know nothing about music theory if you're claiming dave mustaine is an example of an intelligent guitar player.
    soapalot
    If you're a purist, as far as thrash goes, Megadeth is king. Argue that.
    rajandmaria
    hey, i was just listening to this album when i read this. i have heard this album everyday since it came out. amazing- they way thrash should be. dave is awesome
    Detonation
    Actually i dont think this is there best album.. Rust in Peace by far is there best!
    lethaldosage45
    haha every time there is something about Megadeth or Metallica everyone is just like "MEGADETH SUCKS AND METALLICA KICKS ASS!! or vice versa. You get the point. The first post of this review just sets off some stupid battle over who is better and no one actually discusses the album...
    |\puto_rodas/|
    seriously, metallica's solos are in nothing compared to megadeth's solos. Musicians in Megadeth are simply better, and crazy if U know what I mean! Metallica are just... a band. and btw, metallica had their days, and Megadeth still own it. rock On |m|
    DeathzMetal666
    megadeth kill metallica by millons of light years. just because metallica wins more emo fans and earn more money than megadeth doest mean that they are better. megadeth kick ass!
    St. Fixxxer
    WOOT if you dont give a f**k what other bands are out there, Megadeth is the thrash juggernaught!
    blommen
    the thing with megadeth and metallica is that that they are very different from one another. please bear over with for putting them in boxes but here is how i see it. metallica made thrash and focused on the catchiness of their songs. that combined with the fact that they were the first band to really play thrash, made them the most popular. mustaine focused on a much more technical angle to the genre, which sadly effected the album sales(that and his drug abuse which cost so much money that they couldn't afford a producer). i, to this day believe that mustaine is the father of thrash. he was the one that wrote all the early metallica stuff, he influenced both kerry king, and james hetfield while playing with them, and he made megadeth, which to this day in my own humble oppinion stands as the prime example thrash. wheather you like metallica or megadeth the most is a matter of taste, but when we are talking techinal prowess megadeth does have the upper hand
    SERIALTRENDKILL
    Megadeth musical complexity blows Metallica away. The constant line-up change of absolute genius guitarists, from Chris Poland to Marty Freidman has kept Megadeth light years ahead of Metallica. Anyone who actually listens to music and doesnt hear it (like 99% of the people on this planet) knows that hands down. Not taking anything away from Metallica, they are great too. They are just nowhere near as intelligent as Dave Mustaine and all the guitarists he's had in his line-up over the years. I think Kirk Hammet did pretty damn good for being Satriani's "worst student". BTW Peace Sells is ridiculous. The musical complexity is so ridiculous, a lot of it even goes against music theory and it still sounds brilliant. Its no "1-2-3-4 now transition" type riff attack like Metallica so boringly uses, along with every other pop band on the planet. For example, the main solo in Peace Sells is 15 bars. Why not just make it 16? Because Dave doesn't give a ****.