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Classic Review: Megadeth - So Far, So Good... So What!
So Far, So Good... So What!

Label: Capitol Records
Year released: 1988
Duration: 34:25
Tracks: 8
Genre: Thrash Metal

Rating: 4.5/5

Review online: June 24, 2001
Reviewed by: Michel Renaud
Readers Rating
So Far, So Good... So What!

Rated 4.12/5 (82.41%) (83 Votes)

This was my first Megadeth album back in 1988, and to my surprise I often see it being either ignored or bashed on a lot. I never understood why and the explanation given were lame at best. This album kills. Thrash metal that gets under your skin and re-arranges your blood vessels. Ok I'm exaggerating a little bit here. ;)

The album kicks off with an instrumental song, the aptly named "Into the Lungs of Hell". The guitar solos on this one sound particularly "hellish" and seem to add a second dimension to the song. "Set the World Afire" is next with a memorable opening - a bomb falling then exploding, followed by machine gun-like guitar riffs. Living up to its name, this song is arguably the fastest on the album, and once again the guitar solos are pretty powerful. Next comes a killer cover of the Sex Pistols' "Anarchy in the U.K.". If you've never heard this song, you need to get out more. Damn good job by Megadeth here, when thinking about this song, it's always their version that's playing in my head. Not surprisingly, the sound is richer and more powerful than the original (it's not like the Sex Pistols could play in the first place... but that's another story.)

"Mary Jane" is both emotional and speedy, with lots of tempo changes, and it is definitely one of the best songs ont the album. Good job on the vocals there. "502" is next, a mid to fast-paced song that doesn't stand out much - still good though. "In My Darkest Hour" follows with its melodic, yet dark opening, followed by a powerful riff that drags on for a good part of the song, until it speeds up near the 4 minute mark - all hell breaks loose. I personally think this is one of their best songs. "Liar" is next, very fast paced song, the parts where the members chant "Liar" are a bit annoying, but beside that it's a very good song. The last song, "Hook in Mouth" is quite fast with very aggressive guitars and vocals.

The highlight on the album is definitely the guitar work, so powerful and catchy that you can't ignore it, and want it or not, you'll be headbanging for 34 minutes. The drum work is damn good as well. The production could be better but at the same time maybe it would remove some of the brutality in the sound and the result wouldn't be as good - that's always a judgment call and quite subjective as well. It had been a while since I had listened to older Megadeth, and it's pretty amazing how quiet the guitars are on the newer material compared to this. This album has aged pretty well, it's as entertaining as it was when I first got it 13 years ago. And it's still one of the few Megadeth albums onto which there isn't a song I want to skip over.

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