Quite possibly the most underrated Thrash album of all time!
Rattlehead | Pittsburg, PA USA | 11/10/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"How come this album gets as much crap as it does? What's with you people giving this thing less than 5 stars? This album is a thrash landmark! It has really fast songs like "Into the Lungs of Hell" and "Set the World Afire." Then it also has the excellent songs like, "In My Darkest Hour," "Mary Jane," and "Hook In Mouth." Hell, all of the songs on this album are great! They are fast and aggressive! Jeff young is a highly underrated guitarist. He does some rip-roaring shredding in this album! Dave Mustaine sounds like he's angry in this album and that's also what makes it great. This is pure thrash agression and the most underrated thrash album of all time! As for you people who are giving this album [...], you are missing out on a masterpiece of work. Get this album now! You won't be disappointed!"
J. Hartke | E-City, KY | 06/13/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is the pinnacle of classic thrash. If you enjoy banging your head and blowing out your speakers, I highly recommend this album. This masterpiece is so extreme that it's like drinking a milkshake made of liquid metal or eating nail casserole. Megadeth has always been a step ahead in speed, volume, and originality than their other 'metal' competitors, and this album truly demonstrates why Megadeth was, is, and will be the heaviest band ever.
Why people give this album bad marks is as mysterious to me as why people listen to post-Master Metallica. The production is a little grainy and rough, but I'd say it suits the selection. It bolsters the raw intensity of the songs and adds a chaotic, overwhelming force to the album as a whole. Whatever you do, don't get the remastered version. Sure, you'll get your sliver of 'Rust' on the side of the case, but the 'improvements' they added to it strip many of the songs of their feel, primarily the first two tracks (my favorites). Though this lineup wouldn't last, everybody was on the mark for this album, despite how high and drunk they probably were when they recorded it.
You don't have to buy this album, but your life won't be complete until you've given it a whirl. You'll be a lost soul, cursed forever to roam the earth and listen to crappy music. If you like angsty garbage that all sounds the same, you can buy 'Reign In Blood' and listen to the same track ten times in a row. And if you have a man-gina, well, there's always '..And Justice for All'. However, if you like innovative, pulse-pounding thrash metal that is rife with passion and precision, that will leave you enlightened as much as it will devastate your mind, buy this CD now and your only regret will be that you did not steal it sooner."
raker | tn | 11/27/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Classic metal. Yes I know there's a lot of reverb. Though I wouldn't want every cd that way, I think it sounds good on this one. This record came out in the winter and the reverb really goes well with the snow and cold! I'll take this anyday over the remaster."
Megadeth in transition...
howzat | 07/10/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"So Far, So Good...So What! (1988.), Megadeth's third studio album
Dave Mustaine and his band Megadeth were bought to critical acclaim with the release of their second album `Peace Sells...But Who's Buying' in 1986. Mustaine, the man who swore revenge on his former band Metallica had a created a force to be reckoned with and their second release showed they were very much a big part of the Bay Area thrash metal scen. However, like with so many other bands, the road to greater success was to be a tough one. Megadeth had managed to sustain the same line-up for their initial two albums, however towards the end of the `Peace Sells' tour, Mustaine fired guitarist Chris Poland and drummer Gar Samuelson due to their drug abuse (culminating in Poland selling some band equipment to aid his drug habit!) This, as expected destroyed a lot of the chemistry within the band and left Mustaine and bassist Dave Ellefson looking for a new drummer and axeman. However, following recruiting drummer Chuck Behler and guitarist Jeff Young, Megadeth were once again ready to jam out some kick ass heavy metal. `So Far, So Good...So What!' was released in January 1988 and has gone on to become the Megadeth album which has split fan opinion down the middle...
`SFSG...SW' is very much Megadeth's transitional album in more ways than one. It first and foremostly marks a bridge between the rawer, pure thrashy stuff that the first two albums had and the much more technical arrangements that are found on `Rust In Peace'. Secondly, the band itself is in transtion. Guitarist Jeff Young and drummer Chuck Behler do a good job on this album however in many ways they are a temporary bridge between the early line up and the classic line-up (with Marty Friedman and Nick Menza) who would fill their roles following this studio outing. As a consequence of these changes occuring within Megadeth and with their sound, this album produces some interesting results. Some people hold this album with very high regard, often citing it as Deth's best. Indeed I can respect this opinion to a degree, afterall some of Megadeth's finest songs are on here such as `In My Darkest Hour' and `Set The World Afire'. On the contrary, there are Megadeth fans who cite this work as a poor show, lacking consistency and impact. Again I can see where these fans are coming from - the original album's sound came across as very stale (although this is vastly improved on the remaster) and there are also some quite substandard tracks for a band of Megadeth's quality. I personally think the album `JUST' about deserves the 4* rating I've given it as it contains some exceptionally good tracks. It is however an album of choppy inconsistencies with the good songs being marred by tracks such as `502', `Anarchy In The UK' and `Liar'. These songs often come across as rushed, somewhat uninspired and juvenile. Indeed given Mustaine's level of drug abuse at the time and the state he was in during much of the recording sessions, it is not surprising this album is a bit of a mixed bag in terms of quality.
Following Megadeth's re-union in 2004 with the release of 'The System Has Failed', Dave Mustaine personally helped remaster the band's back catalogue. With 'So Far, So Good...So What!' the remaster is excellent. The sound quality on the remastered version is much clearer as opposed to the rather stale production which plagued the original release. The remaster of the album also has demos for 'Into The Lungs Of Hell', `Set The World Afire', `Mary Jane' and `In My Darkest Hour'.
`Into The Lungs Of Hell' opens the album and what a cool opener this is. A stately opening gives way to a blisteringly quick instrumental song with awesome riffs aplenty! Following the opener is one of my personal favourite Megadeth tracks `Set The World Afire'. This was the first post-Metallica song Mustaine wrote and what a thrash metal classic this is. Some fiery, tripletly riffing gets the song going before Mustaine comes in with the vocals over one fantastic guitar line. For a song with power, aggression and vigour look no further. So at this stage, it is `So Far, So Good' however we are then graced by the `So What' aspect of the album with `Anarchy In The UK'. A cover song which has divided fan opinion, I personally don't think it works that well at all. The whole song sounds quite tired and lifeless (even on the remaster!) and Mustaine even gets some of the lyrics wrong. However the album picks itself up again next with `Mary Jane', an atmospheric song with some great, signature Megadeth riffs.
The choppy waters of this album re-emerge with `502'. Another substandard track with a theme of cop car chases. The siren sounds on the track get annoying after a while and the lyrics are pretty uninspired and juvenile. Then following this, we are treated to another classic `Deth song in `In My Darkest Hour'. This 6 minute beast has a great acoustic opening before some great chugging riffs come in. The track builds to a climax towards the end as it garners speed. Mustaine gives an excellent vocal performance in this song which was dedicated to fallen Metallica bassist Cliff Burton. Then we have `Liar'. Musically I find this track pretty good (save the chorus) however the lyrics really let the song down - an attack on former guitarist Chris Poland, it is just that bit childish and laughable. However Mustaine hits the mark lyrically in the closing track `Hook In Mouth'. Another classic song, it is a `1984' inspired track which also attacks the PMRC musical sesoring movement. The guitar work is snarling and the `F-R-E-E-D-O-M' chorus is especially great.
All in all, `So Far, So Good...So What' is a mixed bag which for me is fortunately held together by 3 extremely strong tracks. Some love it, some hate it, its one of those albums. If you are a fan of Megadeth, I would recommend this album as it contains some great material in parts. However if you're new to the band then `Rust In Peace' is the place to start as it is the album that displays the Megadeth sound at its technical and creative best. With `SFSG...SW' the band is rediscovering it's direction. This album is a key part in the development of Megadeth however it is consequentially a mixed one.
MY RATING: 7/10"
Thrash at its best
T. Herbst | Tampa, FL | 12/22/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This cd displays the awesome ability of Megadeth, Jeff Young does an awesome job of filling in for Chris Poland I really believe Young Was better than Poland and very well may be better than Marty Friedman just amazing dual shred solos from Dave and Jeff all around includes Ellefson's great thundering bass lines with very memorable drumming from Chuck Behler the most underrated Megadeth cd EVER, listening to this cd makes me feel that its an atrocity that this lineup didn't create anymore studio albums."