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Review: Megadeth "Youthanasia" a mediocre album by a once great US heavy metal band

Updated on August 12, 2017
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Ara is currently an Accounting student at Glendale Community College in Glendale. CA. He enjoys writing about a variety of topics.

An image of the CD Youthanasia

There is a kind of symbolism on the album's cover. The photo of the babies hanging down symbolizes the decline of the band on a musical level.
There is a kind of symbolism on the album's cover. The photo of the babies hanging down symbolizes the decline of the band on a musical level.

Youthanasia is a more mainstream album by Megadeth but it does not pass the test to be a truly good album

American heavy metal band Megadeth has had a reputation for being one of the elite American heavy metal bands along with Metallica, Exodus, and Slayer. How is their 6th full-length album Youthanasia? I have to give this one an honest, in-depth review for those that may be wondering how this album is like more than 20 years after its release. I had reviewed the album before but now that two decades have passed, we have to look back and see where this got the band compared to where they could have been. The lineup remains unchanged from the previous album Countdown to Extinction. Nick Menza’s last contribution with Megadeth would be the album called Cryptic Writings. Marty Friedman would leave Megadeth in 2000 to be replaced by Al Pitreli. American heavy metal is not as good as it used to be and although Megadeth may not have been the main reason for its decline, I guess Dave Mustaine forgot how to write songs that are memorable. He could have written at least a decent follow-up album to Countdown to Extinction. But he failed that part for sure.

Track listing for the album Youthanasia

  1. Reckoning Day
  2. Train of Consequences
  3. Addicted to Chaos
  4. A Tout Le Monde
  5. Elysian Fields
  6. The Killing Road
  7. Blood of Heroes
  8. Family Tree
  9. Youthanasia
  10. I Thought I Knew it All
  11. Black Curtains
  12. Victory (Note: songs 13 through 16 are only available as bonus tracks on the Japanese release).
  13. A Crown of Worms
  14. Holy Wars…The Punishment Due (LIVE)
  15. Symphony of Destruction (LIVE)
  16. Sweating Bullets (LIVE)

A Brief Review of the album Youthanasia

Youthanasia represents a transition and turning point for Megadeth. The album is more mainstream in nature. The songs are not as heavy as the previous albums and they are slower for the most part. After the okay song called Reckoning Day, we hear the song called Train of Consequences. This one was featured on the program called Headbanger’s Boll back in the early 1990’s. There was a music video made for the song. Next comes the very groovy song called Addicted to Chaos. A Tout Le Monde is about a person who looks back at his life and realizes how little he has accomplished. His soul departs from his body as he tells his loved ones his goodbyes. This is another song that I would consider to be average at best. This is followed by the song called Elysian Fields which is very uninspiring. After the heavy and aggressive song The Killing Road, Blood of Heroes is another one that I would always listen to back in the day. The song is about the description of a heroic person that heads into battle. The brave ones never really die and they always do their best to help the country or city succeed. Family Tree is about someone who lets his family know how much he loves them and he would do anything to make his family is loved and taken care of. Youthanasia has a very good, heavy medium fast part in the middle of the song. In an attempt to go mainstream. Megadeth did not really create an album that is elite or like the kind of material that they were known for before this album. At best, Youthanasia has its good moments but it is a mediocre heavy metal album. This is despite the fact that the last song called Victory is a good fast one to end the album. The song is kind of about a recap of their career as they make reference to the earlier songs in their career.

Bottom line about the album Youthanasia

The best songs in the album are Addicted to Chaos, The Killing Road, Blood of Heroes, Family Tree, Youthanasia, and Victory. These are six very good songs but this is not enough to make the album escape a mediocre grade. The uninspiring songs I Thought I Knew it All and Black Curtains further weaken the album. As a result, Youthanasia only gets a 65 out of 100 points. Megadeth had a chance to establish themselves as the best US thrash metal band but they failed miserably at this. Dave Mustaine took a gamble which did not work out. I think that if Megadeth had stayed true to their thrash metal roots, fans would have had more respect for them. They may not have been more commercially successful than Metallica but they would have been a very strong heavy metal band that continued to show their creativity and full potential. More than 20 years later, I see how mediocre of an album Youthanasia really is.

The song called Addicted to Chaos

Youthanasia and the decline of Megadeth as a band

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The song called Family Tree (one of the best songs in the album)

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The song called Blood of Heroes

© 2016 Ara Vahanian

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