So Far, So Good... So What! Review

artist: Megadeth date: 06/29/2009 category: compact discs
Megadeth: So Far, So Good... So What!
Release Date: 1988
Label: Capitol
Genres: Thrash, Heavy Metal, Speed Metal, Progressive Metal
Number Of Tracks: 8
The album wants to sound threatening but mostly comes off as forced and somewhat juvenile.
 Sound: 7.1
 Lyrics: 8
 Overall Impression: 7.7
 Overall rating:
 Reviewer rating:
 Users rating:
reviews (7) 27 comments vote for this album:
overall: 10
So Far, So Good... So What! Reviewed by: Rattlehead666, on october 25, 2005
9 of 12 people found this review helpful

Sound: This album was released in 1988. The remixed and remastered version of the album has a few differences between on how their songs sound. For example track number six In My Darkest Hour has a longer intro in it than the original recording. A lot of the songs on this album are very impressive such as the songs Set The World Afire and Mary Jane. I don't know about other Megadeth fans but to me I find that the sound of the drums sound a bit different in this album than there other albums. If you get the remixed and remastered edition of SfSGSW you will have special remixes of the songs Into The Lungs Of Hell, Set The World Afire, Mary Jane and In My Darkest Hour. // 10

Lyrics: Along with the music I like the lyrics. I especially like one of the verses on track number seven Liar when he says everything in like one breath. I think Dave Mustaine is a great singer and a great guitar player. // 10

Overall Impression: This is one of Megadeth's best albums. It's just as good as any of the original five Megadeth albums. The album art is also pretty cool to. I use to say that Metallica are way better than Megadeth but when I listened to Peace Sells... But Who's Buying?, So Far, So Good... So What! and Rust In Peace I then though that Megadeth was one of the greatest thrash metal bands of all time. I hate nothing about this album. I hope Megadeth has more to come in great heavy metal even if Dave Mustaine do go single. // 10

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overall: 8
So Far, So Good... So What! Reviewed by: postmortem2006, on june 29, 2009
7 of 7 people found this review helpful

Sound: Megadeth needs absolutely no introduction - if you need to be introduced to Megadeth, you're probably deaf or something. A band that has been treadin water to some extent in the past decade, releasing some album thats are really just 'good' and nothing more. Cast your minds back to the good old days, and chances are a lot of people will hardly remember much of this record, a lost gem of thrash metal that was sandwiched in between two far more successful releases. Despite being overshadowed by the likes of 'Peace Sells... But Who's Buying?' and 'Rust in Peace', 'So Far, So Good...So What!' is quite possibly one of the best thrash albums to come out of the eighties and its certainly worth a place in your record collection. However, this isn't an album for the faint of heart but if you like your music fast, energetic, heavy, catchy and wonderfully crafted then read on... The album kicks off with the three and a half minute assault of 'Into the Lungs of Hell', a display of technical instrumental wizardry that if anything, sets the pace for the album rather nicely and leads straight into the first 'proper' song on the album, coincidentally one of the first songs Dave Mustaine ever wrote for the band -'Set the World Afire'. An absolutely devastating track that paints a harrowing, if somewhat dated image of a post-nuclear fallout not only with the lyrics, but with it's barrage of riffs. It may start out simplistic, but anyone who knows Megadeth's early works knows that Mustaine never keeps stuff simple. You ridiculous metalcore kids could learn a lesson here, this is music that requires balls - and by god Mustaine has them. Massive balls the size of the sun, and hes ain't shy to let people know about it, playing faster and angrier than before yet retaining his extremely tight rhythm style intact. Considering the guy was off his tits on smack whilst recording this album, this is beyond incredible! Other tracks, such as 'Mary Jane', dabble with some slower and slightly more experimental styles that are no less punishing than the album's openers, with new guitarist Jeff Young playing some spectacular (though slightly odd-sounding) guitar passages and he gives this album a bit of spit and shine that gives it that extra appeal that all records need. Now, the ONLY song that every single Megadeth fans knows from this album is 'In My Darkest Hour', Dave Mustain's fitting tribute to ex-bandmate Cliff Burton. Possibly the best display of emotion and anger anyone could ever display in a single song, this has quite rightly because a staple at Megadeth's shows and frankly I don't need to go over this song here because everyone with ears will have heard it - read another review if you've been living under a rock since 1988. The absolute standout of 'SFSGSW' though, has to be the album closer 'Hook In Mouth'. One of the angriest, most evil sounding songs Mustaine and Co. have ever written, this furious outlash at the PMRC is simmering with rage all the way through, picking up pace here and there just to prove... that it can! Dave Mustaine makes this song but credit where its due to Chuck Behler on drums. Not just on the final track, but on the album in general - a lot of people who dislike this record tend to blame Behler for it's shortcomings but if anything Behler is one of the album's best aspects. Yeah, hes not amazing but hes not a bad replacement for Gar Samuelson (though I believe Gar was the better drummer). Its not all good news though. There are two tracks on here that drag this album away from the 'nearly flawless' mark - god knows why, but the band decided it's be a good idea to cover the Sex Pistols' 'Anarchy in the UK'. I don't mind the original song, and I mind this one too much either, but it completely ruins the flow of the album and putting it as the THIRD track was a huge mistake. Then theres the song '502' which is pretty pointless. Its blatently a filler, its not neccessarily terrible but its just...there. It has no purpose other than to make bump up the track list a notch, and since a lot of the songs on this album were written years before (as I mentioned beforehand, 'Set the World Afire' was written nearly five years before this album was released) you can tell that when Mustaine tried to write new songs for 'SFSGSW' he was so smacked off his tits that he just couldn't do it. Final mention to bassist David Ellefson, who does a good job keeping up with Jeff and Dave on all the songs though he never does anything REALLY outstanding. Keeping up with the guitars is hard enough with a record like this though, so fair enough I suppose. Overall, a fantastic album with fantastic production, some incredible riffs and a violent, sinsiter sound, let down by two average filler tracks that were very poorly placed on the tracklisting. Use the 'skip track' button accordingly. // 8

Lyrics: Dave Mustaine is no singer. This is a fact, and though a lot of Megafanboys will disagree he has never been - and never will be - a good singer. Still, his voice has always suited the music hes made and I think his perfomance here is hes best after 1992's 'COuntdown to Extinction'. That evil Mustaine snarl is more prevalent than ever and it fits better than ever too - just don't expect Rob Halfor. Lyrics, for the most part, are a very interesting read and as with the album in general, the lyrics as a whole are let down by '502' with it's terrible lyrics about speeding ('Driving fast makes me feel good/speed trap under my hood'). The lyrics to 'Mary Jane have been the subject of endless discussion for a long time, as there are numerous interpretations of the songs meaning - some say its about marajuana, some say its about a with, there are so many theories that its difficult to really say much of it. 'Liar' has a bit of a backstory to it, being written about previous guitarist Chris Poland who was fired after continuously pawning the band's gear from heroin. Nothing life changing with the lyrics, but the suject matter is most certainly something different to a majority of what Megadeth write about these days, with Mustaine's newfound relentless 'F--k the government' attitude really starting to grate with a lot of fans. Finally, the epic 'Hook in Mouth' is Dave Mustaine's marvelous 'f--k you' to the PMRC, who at the time were causing a lot of trouble with the over sensitivity of music censorship. Both instrumentally and lyrically, this song is one of the best Dave has ever done and ever will do, cleverly stating 'F is for fighting/R is for Red/Ancestor's blood in the battles they've shed/E we elect them/E we eject them/In the land of the free and the home of the brave/D for your dying/O your overture/M we will cover your grave with manure/This spells our freedom, it means nothing to me/So long as theres a PMRC'. Mustaine's balls of steel show themselves through once again. Shame that the narcotics ruined the lyrics for a few songs on this record, otherwise I would've marked it much much higher. // 7

Overall Impression: As I have mentioned numerous times now, if this album had put the Sex Pistols cover elsewhere in the tracklisting and pretty much nixed '502' completely, the album would've scored so much higher. But thats what the skip button on your CD/media player is for, and some people absolutely love these tracks so its all a matter of opinion. Don't let the relatively low score fool you,this album is a spectacular achievement that deserves to be played at extremely high volumes. Standouts most definitely go to 'Hook in Mouth', 'Set the World Afire', 'Into the Lungs of Hell' and 'In My Darkest Hour', though you'll have to see which songs you like yourself as this album, as previously stated, divides opinion a lot. The fact that this album rocks as hard as it does still leaves me in disbelief after hearing about the insane numbers of illegal sustances going into the bands' bodies at the time, so I think it just goes to show that Dave Mustaine really is one of thrash metal's frontrunners and probably always will be. Pick up 'So Far, So Good... So What!' whenever you get the chance, it'll kick you in the f--king nuts! // 9

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overall: 8.3
So Far, So Good... So What! Reviewed by: Gopher636, on february 09, 2006
5 of 8 people found this review helpful

Sound: Megadeth are better then Metallica, by far. I think. If not, theyre equally as good. So Far, So Good... So What! is my favorite megadeth album, followed by Rust in Peace. The production doesnt touch RIP though; it's very raw, which gives the album more of an edge, just like Killing Is My Business. Just 'cause I like it doesn't make it good though. // 7

Lyrics: Dave Mustaine is a great guitarist and a satisfactory singer. Megadeth wouldn't be Megadeth without him, that's for damn sure. They go with the music really good, especially in my favorite song, Hook In Mouth, which is basically about the PMRC or something putting parental advisory stickers on albums. // 9

Overall Impression: It is my personal favorite Megadeth album. Best songs are In MY Darkest Hour, Hook In Mouth, Mary Jane, 502 and the opening instrumental, Into The Lungs Of Hell, which is essentially one giant guitar solo. the only bad point is the cover od the Sex Pistols' "Anarchy In The UK" which I despise. But a very good album, any thrash fan should have this and Rust in Peace, and maybe Peace Sells in their repotior. // 9

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overall: 7.3
So Far, So Good... So What! Reviewed by: Mental-lica, on october 15, 2007
2 of 3 people found this review helpful

Sound: This album is a pretty good record by Megadeth, definetly not the best but it's up there. I can't say I didn't expect good things from it but after owning Rust In Peace and their greatest hits, I expected much more from it. This is of course still a great album, but the guys in the Megadeth forums rave about this being the second best so I had to get it, but I definetly don't regret it. This album, is a totally new side of Megadeth, with less masterful solo's more riffage and a lot of lyrics and strange guitar effects, because of the new guitarist Jeff Young, who was hired after Chris Poland was fired. This is Megadeth's third album and includeds the first song written by Dave after being fired from Metallica in 81', Set the World Afire. The track list goes as followed: 01. Into The Lungs Of Hell - a great instrumental with a cool guitar part after the first 30 seconds. 02. Set The World Afire - this is a great song on the album with some great guitar playing on it. 03. Anarchy In The Uk - this is a cover from the Sex Pistols song, and they do a pretty good job of it but it's not very metal sounding. 04. Mary Jane - this is a very sad song but has awesome riffs and music. 05. 502 - this is a poor song from the album, I don't like it that much and I usually skip over it. 06. In My Darkest Hour - this song is probably one of the best from the album and really is just amazing with very fluent guitar parts and amazing solos. This song was written by Dave after the death of Metallica bassist Cliff Burton, who was a good friend of Dave. 07. Liar - easily the most underrated song on the album. Usually skipped over by most fans, this song has amazing riffs in them that make you want to just pick up your guitar and start playing. 08. Hook In Mouth - this song is really strange but very good and has a great point of view about the government in it. // 7

Lyrics: The lyrics in this album are one of the strong points of it. Like in Hook In Mouth it talks about how the government does a poor job of functioning and it's very political and awesome. Liar is all about a teenager who messes up everything he's around and is hated by everyone. Set the World Afire, like many other 'Deth songs is about a Nuclear holocaust but it definetly isnt the best of them. // 8

Overall Impression: The best songs from this album are Liar, In My Darkest Hour, Into the Lungs of Hell, and Set the World Afire. This album is by no means bad, if your looking for good riffage and some great end drum solos, and masterful lyrics, this album is for you. If your looking for just balls to the wall masterful solos, go buy Rust In Peace. // 7

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overall: 7.3
So Far, So Good... So What! Reviewed by: Busproof, on october 28, 2008
2 of 3 people found this review helpful

Sound: This is Megadeth's third album, following both Peace Sells... But Who's Buying? and Killing Is My Business... And Business Is Good!, so it definately has big shoes to fill. Also, it's the first album to face a major lineup change (with both Chris Poland and Gars Samuelson being replaced). Overall, it follows the typical Megadeth sound, being primarly hard hitting thrash metal, with a couple of kicks thrown in such as a metalized cover of The Sex Pistols' 'Anarchy in the UK' (with incorrect lyrics), and the impressive track 'In My Darkest Hour' (which starts of relatively slow, and eventually evolves into a thrash metal punch in the face - in a good sense). The sound seems to have evolved a bit in a melodic sense from Peace Sells, while losing a bit of the intensity, which isn't always a good thing. // 7

Lyrics: Megadeth's third album strikes back with some interesting lyrical content, sliding more into a political direction than the previous albums, with less focus on classic Megadeth topics such as death, and satan (although, fans of such content will still feel at home), and more focus on things such the after affects of nuclear war (Set the World Afire), and the PMRC (Hook in Mouth). The lyrics suit the music well, and it still carries that dark tone that Megadeth is infamous for. Mustaine's voice suits the music, as well as the lyrics well, with an amazing job done on Mary Jane and In My Darkest Hour in the actual singing department. My only complaint is the screw ups on Anarchy in UK - I don't know what Dave was thinking. Also, the lyrics as a whole seem less 'focused'. Where KIMB and PSBWB both seemed to follow equally grim topics from song to song, and seemed to fit together well, the lyrical content on SFSGSW seem to be all over the place. // 8

Overall Impression: It definately isn't Peace Sells... but it is a great album in it's own right. it's a good vision of Megadeth's evolution between Peace Sells... and Rust in Peace on both a lyrical and technically playing level. I loved In My Darkest Hour, as well as both Into The Lungs of Hell/Set The World Afire and Hook in Mouth. Overall, it's a good album, and I like how the sound is starting to shift more toward the Rust in Peace spectrum, still, I wish the whole thing could 'fit together' like Peace Sells... and Killing Is My Business... did. The tone was all over the place it seemed - doesn't make it a bad album though. If this album was stolen or lost, I would buy it again. it's not my favorite Megadeth album by any means, but I still love it. I would, however, suggest new listeners to check into Peace Sells... But Who's Buying or perhaps Killing Is My Business... first to get a good taste of what Megadeth is really about. // 7

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overall: 8
So Far, So Good... So What! Reviewed by: WeirdMariachi, on february 10, 2006
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Sound: Ahh the great Dave Mustaine, after kicking out Chris Poland, he recruited Jeff Young to record this classic underrated album. So the music changed quite abit, but not to much. While Dave was the street smart guy, Jeff was a more upperclass rich kid. You can tell Mustaine was really angry when this was recorded. Probably at Chris and Gars. If you want raw, in your face, pissed of thrash metal, go get this. // 8

Lyrics: Lyrics are ok, Mustaine has done better, but there still pretty good. You can tell he got personal on the lyrics here, maybe cus of all the turmoil he was going through. // 8

Overall Impression: Although Megadeth would release better albums than this, you can't overestimate its power, the music is great, impressive riffs and leads. The mood is just raw anger. All the songs are great, except for maybe, the cover "Anarchy In The UK" and "502." Other then that the album is decent. Only buy this if you've been a Megadeth for awhile, if you're new to them start of with something else. You probably won't like all this rawness. // 8

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overall: 4.3
So Far, So Good... So What! Reviewed by: Clancy17, on april 17, 2009
0 of 2 people found this review helpful

Sound: The riffs in these songs and the pure "shreddingness" of the whole record are actually some of the better of Megadeth's work. The guitar and drum work here have nothing to complain about, it's really the poorly executed arrangments and vocal work and "muddy" sounding production that really puts down what could have been another classic album added to the Megadeth collection. // 3

Lyrics: The Lyrics here for Megadeth are actually the best thing about this record, probably even the band's best but the way they are delivered are the poorest the vocalist Dave Mustaine has ever delivered. However, there are some spots in some songs where they are given justice like in the chorus of "In My Darkest Hour". But overall, the vocals come off as either forced, immature, poor sound quality, not loud enough, or all of the above. It's also no coincidence that the recording of this record was when the band were most heavily involved in drugs as it shows in much of the vocal work of Dave Mustaine. Songs like "502" and "Liar" have immature lyrics and poorly executed vocal work. Other than those the rest of the lyrics are pretty good. // 6

Overall Impression: This is clearly one of Megadeth's worst albums up there with "Cryptic Writings", "The World needs a Hero", and the god-awful "Risk". The only thing this album has going for it is that it's one of the four old school Megadeth albums and true sounding thrash metal records in Megadeth's catalog before they went to the mainstream sound of "Countdown to Extinction", not to say either sound is good or bad, it's just that this album has more nostalgic value over "Countdown to Extinction" does, even though "CTE" is a much better album than "SFSGSW". The best songs of this record is the opening instrumental "Into the Lungs of Hell", the next track "Set the World Afire" and the dark moody ballad "In my Darkest Hour". The closer track "Hook in Mouth" is not too shabby either. The worst ones were the dreadful "502" and the cover song "Anarchy in the U.K." which comes off as if it was meant to be the main track off the album held at the track #3 position. It really has not one "great" song on the record, just a bunch of "okay" and "pretty good" ones. There is nothing special about the whole album and could have been/should have been a whole lot better. Below average for Megadeth standards. // 4

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