Sound — 8
The sound in this record is fine, though I've found some mistakes on the drum recording (don't remember which song.) It is kind of modern, that made some fans hungry, but it is not my case. They say Friedman influenced this record a lot, and you can tell that, he wanted a "more mainsteam Megadeth" (and then he got fired!)Some violins, strange industrial noises, some guitar effects too. Very different from previous records, I digged it a lot.
Lyrics — 8
Since they didn't write an internal book (except some lines) and I'm not that hot with english (I'm from Argentina) don't know that much on the subject, but there's alcohol struggling here ("Prince Of Darkness") drugs and homeless ("Breadline") mental diseases, etc. Mustaine style of singing fits fine w/lyrics, he really improved from early tapes.
Overall Impression — 10
My opinion: I think this is a very good album, something I didn't hear or read anywhere else. They really tried something diferent here, and no one forgave them for that. There's so much talent in songs like "Ecstasy," "Breadline," "Insomnia", I like them all. Please people relax for a moment and forget they always need to be the fastest heavy-trash machine, forget the name of the band, and taste those european sounds, the feeling of each song, their dramatism. The only Thing I don't like is that it turns out a little short (in time).