The System Has Failed review by Megadeth

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  • Released: Sep 14, 2004
  • Sound: 10
  • Lyrics: 8
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 9.3 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.1 (147 votes)
Megadeth: The System Has Failed

Sound — 10
Well, the sound in this record is excellent (I wouldn't expect anything else from Mustaine at this point of his career), compact sound for a compact release. Great musicianship, more "Mustained" than ever, it is known that Chris Poland played the leads in most part of this record, which is great to a fan of earlier Megadeth records like me. Poland has a unique, chaotic style of playing, maybe not as technical as Friedman or Pitrelli - both former guitarists in previous Megadeth line ups, but still very distinctable sound, a mix of old style shredding with some crazy ideas, it reminds very much the "Peace Sells..." spirit. There are songs in the line of "Rust In Peace" or "So Far, So Good, So What" but other seem to be more in the line of "Peace Sells..." and others come from the mind of the latest Mustaine (e. g.: "The Scorpion," "Die Dead Enough"). Changes of tempo in the middle of songs, and the use of back voices doing choruses is very tipical from Megadeth of old, and also are some chord progression used in here.

Lyrics — 8
The lyrics are coming from various subjects that always seem to be related with Dave Mustaine, such as: world order, cold wars, but also stories of love (with a touch of black humor and irony), twisted personalities, and the second autobiographical song from Mustaine (the first was "Victory" from "Youthanasia"), I'm talking about "Of Mice And Man," an excellent song, that covers even the story with Metallica former bandmates, and of course, his self-destructive tendencies. Mustaine vocal skills never were that great, but this dude has his own style, and it works fine with the music and lyrics.

Overall Impression — 10
This is a great record from a geat band (or a part of the band): every song is great, it covers years of story and many styles; it has strenght, power, definition, the songs are catchy, but agressive and original, they have melody, what else can you ask for? definitely up there with the best Megadeth albums; the only thing I don't like is that the songs don't fit each other making a compact idea of the record as a whole; I mean, you feel the mood of a "Greatest Hits" record, where songs are great, but it lacks of something: the concept of a record as a unit, that sutil spirit that touches every song, but leads them to the whole, which didn't happened (at least, to me) with others Megadeth records, such as "Peace Sells..." (very dark spirit), "Cryptic Writings" (very experimental, powerfull feeling) or even the underrated "Risk" (modern concept, industrial, more mainstream spirit).

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