Megadeth - Peace Sells... But Who's Buying - July 20, 1986
Ever since he was unceremoniously ousted from Metallica in 1983, Dave Mustaine has vowed to be better than Metallica. This album was the closest he ever got. Sure, it's better than every single Metallica album, except for one. Ride the Lightning beats Peace Sells just because of the simple fact that it's totally fucking perfect, but Peace Sells is really, really damn close.
There's so much to like about this album. First of all, the overall sound is really pleasing. It's a shame that albums don't sound like this anymore. The guitars crush, the bass is clearly audible, the drums and vocals are both where they should be. The songs are very well written too, all of them excellent, varied pieces of thrash metal that expand on Dave's original vision from Killing 'Em All is my Business. Then there are the riffs. Oh good fucking god, the riffs! These riffs are so twisted and neck-snapping that only an egomaniacal control-freak with a substance abuse problem like Dave Mustaine could write them. What about the guitar solos? Well, my friends, almost every solo on this record is the type that makes you air guitar and stick out your tongue, wiggling it against an invisible, floating vagina.
Yes kids, this is fucking THRASH METAL, capitalized forever. The fact that the so-called 'unholy trinity' gets talked about when talking thrash in 1986, the fact that Master of Puppets gets talked about when talking thrash in 1986 before this albums gets talked about is a fucking travesty. This is the best of 1986 (that I've heard so far, anyway -- maybe Anvil Bitch will change my mind!) and it would be absolutely fucking perfect if it weren't for one thing. THAT STUPID FUCKING COVER SONG!! Why, Dave? Why?! It's not a bad cover by any means, but it totally fucks with the momentum of this masterpiece. It also cuts the album's awesome closing track, "My Last Words" off from the rest of the album. Silly. Metallica kept all their covers on separate releases, Dave! D'oh!
Standouts: My Last Words, Good Mourning/Black Friday, Devil's Island