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Rust in Peace: The Inside Story of the Megadeth Masterpiece

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FEATURING A FOREWORD BY SLASH A BEHIND-THE-SCENES LOOK AT THE MAKING OF MEGADETH'S ICONIC RECORD, RUST IN PEACE , BY THE BAND'S LEAD VOCALIST AND GUITARIST When Rust in Peace was released in 1990, the future of Megadeth was uncertain. Fresh off their performance at the record-breaking Monsters of Rock festival, and with knockout new albums from Slayer, Anthrax, and M FEATURING A FOREWORD BY SLASH A BEHIND-THE-SCENES LOOK AT THE MAKING OF MEGADETH'S ICONIC RECORD, RUST IN PEACE , BY THE BAND'S LEAD VOCALIST AND GUITARIST When Rust in Peace was released in 1990, the future of Megadeth was uncertain. Fresh off their performance at the record-breaking Monsters of Rock festival, and with knockout new albums from Slayer, Anthrax, and Metallica dominating the charts, the pressure to produce a standout statement record was higher than ever. In Rust in Peace: The Inside Story of the Megadeth Masterpiece, the band's lead vocalist and guitarist, Dave Mustaine, gives readers a never-before-seen glimpse into the artistry and insanity that went into making the band's most iconic record. He recounts the arduous task of hiring the band and supporting cast, of managing egos and extracurriculars during the album's ensuing success, and succumbing to the pressures of fame and fortune-which eventually forced the band to break up. And yet, Megadeth's demise was just the beginning; the birth pangs of the record were nothing compared to what came next. Alcohol, drugs, sex, money, power, property, prestige, the lies fed to the band by the industry-and the lies they told each other-threatened to eat away at the band's bond like rust, devouring it until only the music survived.


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FEATURING A FOREWORD BY SLASH A BEHIND-THE-SCENES LOOK AT THE MAKING OF MEGADETH'S ICONIC RECORD, RUST IN PEACE , BY THE BAND'S LEAD VOCALIST AND GUITARIST When Rust in Peace was released in 1990, the future of Megadeth was uncertain. Fresh off their performance at the record-breaking Monsters of Rock festival, and with knockout new albums from Slayer, Anthrax, and M FEATURING A FOREWORD BY SLASH A BEHIND-THE-SCENES LOOK AT THE MAKING OF MEGADETH'S ICONIC RECORD, RUST IN PEACE , BY THE BAND'S LEAD VOCALIST AND GUITARIST When Rust in Peace was released in 1990, the future of Megadeth was uncertain. Fresh off their performance at the record-breaking Monsters of Rock festival, and with knockout new albums from Slayer, Anthrax, and Metallica dominating the charts, the pressure to produce a standout statement record was higher than ever. In Rust in Peace: The Inside Story of the Megadeth Masterpiece, the band's lead vocalist and guitarist, Dave Mustaine, gives readers a never-before-seen glimpse into the artistry and insanity that went into making the band's most iconic record. He recounts the arduous task of hiring the band and supporting cast, of managing egos and extracurriculars during the album's ensuing success, and succumbing to the pressures of fame and fortune-which eventually forced the band to break up. And yet, Megadeth's demise was just the beginning; the birth pangs of the record were nothing compared to what came next. Alcohol, drugs, sex, money, power, property, prestige, the lies fed to the band by the industry-and the lies they told each other-threatened to eat away at the band's bond like rust, devouring it until only the music survived.

30 review for Rust in Peace: The Inside Story of the Megadeth Masterpiece

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jason Motia

    It's written more as an oral history from the perspective of the people involved, and as a Megadeth fan it's a must read. Even if you're not a fan, trying to figure out how they survived 1988 and 1989 is worth the effort.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Steve

    Meh. Just some people arguing with each other. A few tidbits for hard core fans, which I am one but still..... Reading this lowers my respect for any of these guys. No thought for the fans in this one, just measuring egos. Thank goodness it's short. My advice: Write songs not books.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Ryan Mckay

    Rust In Peace, the album, is phenomenal. It’s a thrash juggernaut, with insane, buzzsaw riffage (courtesy of Dave Mustaine, whose guitar snarls like a wild aminal), exotic, beautiful, eastern-tinged solos (courtesy of ex-Cacophony shredder Marty Friedman), a swinging, tight rhythm section (Ellefson and Menza), interesting lyrical themes, and rhythmic and melodic hooks aplenty. Hell, even the vocals are good, which is unusual for Mustaine. It’s a fabulous album which I bought in 1990 and have nev Rust In Peace, the album, is phenomenal. It’s a thrash juggernaut, with insane, buzzsaw riffage (courtesy of Dave Mustaine, whose guitar snarls like a wild aminal), exotic, beautiful, eastern-tinged solos (courtesy of ex-Cacophony shredder Marty Friedman), a swinging, tight rhythm section (Ellefson and Menza), interesting lyrical themes, and rhythmic and melodic hooks aplenty. Hell, even the vocals are good, which is unusual for Mustaine. It’s a fabulous album which I bought in 1990 and have never stopped listening to or (trying to) play along to. For me it’s better than Reign in Blood, perhaps even better than Ride The Lightning and …And Justice for All. In the thrash pantheon it’s bested only by Master of Puppets. Make no mistake, it’s fantastic, and Mustaine is a genius. Rust In Peace, the book, is woeful. To be honest, I didn’t expect much, having read Mustaine, Dave’s previous memoir (inexplicably a NYT bestseller). The joke is on me for buying this new offering, but I can’t help myself, when it comes to Rust In Peace I have to read everything. But come on, man! Not only does this book fail to do the album justice, it actually demeans the experience of hearing the album. Megadeth was always supposed to be the thinking person’s metal band but Dave’s descriptions of the genesis of his songs reveal him to be a moronic ignoramus (see: Holy Wars). His narcissism is on full display here too: Dave is virtually the only person who can make Trump look humble. As a case in point, consider his description of Friedman’s guitar skills. Mustaine admits that he was intimidated by Marty’s ability, so much so that he bought heroin and ended up back in rehab (I found this pretty fascinating). But he just can’t help himself – rather than just admit that Marty is a preternaturally gifted player, he has to shore up his own ego by putting Marty down: “granted, he was really good at lead, but he was not a well-rounded player; not a rhythmic-lead-acoustic-electric-songwriter-lyric-writer-producer-engineer. He was not all these things. He was only a lead guitar player…” (p. 81). These excursions into Mustaine’s psyche are at least interesting (if predictable), but perhaps the biggest sin is that the book is boring. Truth be told, there really isn’t that much of an interesting story behind the making of Rust in Peace. It’s mostly a bunch of disjointed, vague recollections from various producers and engineers. The second biggest sin is that the writing is awful. And it’s ghost-written! I don’t see how it could have been any worse if Mustaine had written it all himself. Sample line: “I still wonder in wondrous wonder what it would have been like with Vinnie and Darrell.” Jesus. And why we’re on the topic of Pantera, let me get one last grievance off my chest: the book lacks basic fact-checking. I realise this is hardly The New Yorker, but still a little attention to detail wouldn’t go astray. On page 24 Mustaine recounts how he tried to get Diamond Darrell in the band: “We needed a guitar player. I called Dimebag Darrell Abbott from Pantera. We knew each other from touring together. The guy had one of my lyrics tattooed on his leg.” Now, this presumably takes place in late 1988 (according to the chronology of the book). It must have taken place before February 1990, which is when Friedman joined the band. But the lyric Diamond Darrell has tattooed on his leg turns out to be from Sweating Bullets, which is on Countdown to Extinction (released years later in July 1992). So there’s no way Diamond Darrell can have had this lyric tatttoed on his leg at the point Mustaine suggests he did. Bottom line: this book is shoddily written, boring and inaccurate (even Slash’s “foreword” sounds literally phoned in: Slash didn’t bother to write it himself, and he talks more about Peace Sells than Rust in Peace). I wouldn’t care, but the album is just such an exciting, intelligent, landmark effort that it would be great to have a book that didn’t confirm all the obvious stereotypes of 80s metallers: that they’re egotistical and thick. This is a sadly missed opportunity.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Scott Delgado

    I liked that the book dealt with the build up to the album and not just the making of it. I also liked that it even covered some of the writing of "Countdown To Extinction." There were definitely a LOT of drugs involved. Heh heh. I'm not quite sure how the book gets credited to Dave Mustaine but not the rest of the guys. The book reads like a long magazine interview because it is made up of interviews with the other members. Therefore, Dave and Marty wrote their parts. Maybe Dave organized everyt I liked that the book dealt with the build up to the album and not just the making of it. I also liked that it even covered some of the writing of "Countdown To Extinction." There were definitely a LOT of drugs involved. Heh heh. I'm not quite sure how the book gets credited to Dave Mustaine but not the rest of the guys. The book reads like a long magazine interview because it is made up of interviews with the other members. Therefore, Dave and Marty wrote their parts. Maybe Dave organized everything.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Stephen Nand-Lal

    A fascinating behind the curtains tale about the making of the legendary album Rust in Peace, by Megadeth. The story does have a heavy emphasis on the drug use and abuse during the making of the album, therefore the book might not be suitable for all. Dave does tell the story from a fascinating point of view, and the audiobook is engrossing and tells a compelling story. Would definitely recommend the audiobook, for anyone interested in thrash metal and/or Megadeth :)

  6. 4 out of 5

    Peter Pereira

    If you are contemplating reading this book, and therefore reading this review, you are A. A heavy metal fan. B. A Megadeth fan or like me C. A Marty Friedman fan (or one of the other three). First and foremost, this is not a literary masterpiece, but you expected that. In fact, this book is a conversation by all parties involved, spliced together in chronological order. There are big advantages in presenting it this way, in that each subject can discuss the moments, in their own words. But that If you are contemplating reading this book, and therefore reading this review, you are A. A heavy metal fan. B. A Megadeth fan or like me C. A Marty Friedman fan (or one of the other three). First and foremost, this is not a literary masterpiece, but you expected that. In fact, this book is a conversation by all parties involved, spliced together in chronological order. There are big advantages in presenting it this way, in that each subject can discuss the moments, in their own words. But that also means that the book lacks some depth because there is no uniform voice telling the overall story. This is Mustaine's book (as is Megadeth itself) and he gets to respond to comments by others he doesn't agree with. The irony is he adamant in the book that the other members did not 'write' the songs, no different here, without their voices he could not have 'written' this book! LOL. The story itself is interesting on so many levels. From the personal problems, to drug use, to the quest for sobriety, Rust in Peace the album, is merely the backdrop for a study on the human condition. It is divided into three sections. Before, during, and after with a section in the middle explaining the origins of each songs, which I thought was quite interesting. There are tons of insight on all the events leading up to recording, but what I found most interesting was the discussion, toward the end of the book, where a reunion of the iconic four, was attempted (again) with some revealing comments by the three remaining members, regarding this near miss. If you ask me, those four Mustaine, Ellefson, Friedman and Menza ARE Megadeth. Every version before, or since, has been fantastic in their own way, but the chemistry between those four was sublime, and to read how close things were to getting the four of them together again (not that long ago) was great. If you like Megadeth, then you are going to read this no matter what anyone says. So... what are you waiting for!

  7. 4 out of 5

    Tina

    I have a weird habit of reading memoirs written by "celebrities", especially if drugs are involved. The weird part is that I dont have to know who they are....if I hear about one of these memoirs I get it. That's exactly how I ended up reading this book. Full disclosure, I had heard of Megadeth, but only in passing. At the age of 18, in 1980, I was listening to the likes of the Eagles, not to heavy metal bands. To be honest, I always thought heavy metal was screaming into a mike, while gyrating an I have a weird habit of reading memoirs written by "celebrities", especially if drugs are involved. The weird part is that I dont have to know who they are....if I hear about one of these memoirs I get it. That's exactly how I ended up reading this book. Full disclosure, I had heard of Megadeth, but only in passing. At the age of 18, in 1980, I was listening to the likes of the Eagles, not to heavy metal bands. To be honest, I always thought heavy metal was screaming into a mike, while gyrating and sweating. In this regard Rust in Peace was an interesting read...if you love inside info on the creation of music this is a good book. Unfortunately, not so much if you want to hear about their lives, in and out of recovery...very lacking there. The drug side is interesting because they are so casual about it all, until they are not.. To me, this is the strongest part of the book, although they don't explore addiction, in relations to their own worlds. This is very lacking. This is an odd book to read because a specific subject is introduced by one of the members, then you get a few memories from the people involved and poof! A new topic is explored without any deep connections to any one subject. Finally, Mustaine is one hell of a control freak. He is lucky, because he is surrounded by people who understand him. If it were me, I would have punched him and said "you are not so special, you spoiled baby". Overall, this is an ok read. Megadeth lovers will love it.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Lord Zion

    Disappointing follow up to Dave Mustaine's excellent autobiography. What I was hoping for was an in-depth story telling; a day-by-day, blow-by-blow account of the making of one of my favourite albums of all time. Personal anecdotes and technical information. Finally, a business-like analysis of the marketing and sales. What I got was a bunch of middle-aged men bitching and whining about eachother, spending more time talking about their sobriety issues than the actual making of the album. In fact, Disappointing follow up to Dave Mustaine's excellent autobiography. What I was hoping for was an in-depth story telling; a day-by-day, blow-by-blow account of the making of one of my favourite albums of all time. Personal anecdotes and technical information. Finally, a business-like analysis of the marketing and sales. What I got was a bunch of middle-aged men bitching and whining about eachother, spending more time talking about their sobriety issues than the actual making of the album. In fact, that aspect of the book was almost an aside. I wasn't a fan of the format. They have attempted to mimic Motley Crue's "The Dirt" by having the cast of characters recall events, and then comment on eachother's comments, and then comment on those. It should be conversational, but it doesn't come across like that. It just reads as bitter. I should state, as someone who was in a band myself for just over a decade and was in the studio a lot, maybe my hopes for the book were too skewed toward a direction that the average reader may be less interested in. Hard for me to say. Worth a read if you are a huge fan but a more casual reader should probably steer clear.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Jason

    Interesting look into a rad album, the chaos and personalities of those responsible and the atmosphere of that era. Mustaine still comes off a bit full of himself at times but that’s nothing new. The book did feel a bit rushed at the end but it’s okay because we know that the real ending to Megadeth hasn’t been written yet. As important and unique as Megadeth is to metal history, it’s also just as interesting to hear from the players. This book is a quick read and if you’re even vaguely familiar Interesting look into a rad album, the chaos and personalities of those responsible and the atmosphere of that era. Mustaine still comes off a bit full of himself at times but that’s nothing new. The book did feel a bit rushed at the end but it’s okay because we know that the real ending to Megadeth hasn’t been written yet. As important and unique as Megadeth is to metal history, it’s also just as interesting to hear from the players. This book is a quick read and if you’re even vaguely familiar with the band, the scene or just the album, it is enjoy to see the players in your imagination doing and saying the things this book describes.

  10. 4 out of 5

    D'Anne

    I enjoyed this, though I felt like I'd gleaned a good deal of it from Mystaine's previous book. But I dug getting more of the backstory of the Rust In Peace record. Personally, Symphony of Destruction is my favorite Megadeth album. It was my first introduction to the band. (And all these years later it's also the perfect soundtrack to the horror show of America under Trump.) I bought Rust In Peace after Symphony. I remember opening the CD case & seeing the black & yellow radioactive symbol & it I enjoyed this, though I felt like I'd gleaned a good deal of it from Mystaine's previous book. But I dug getting more of the backstory of the Rust In Peace record. Personally, Symphony of Destruction is my favorite Megadeth album. It was my first introduction to the band. (And all these years later it's also the perfect soundtrack to the horror show of America under Trump.) I bought Rust In Peace after Symphony. I remember opening the CD case & seeing the black & yellow radioactive symbol & it felt kind of dangerous and subversive. I still love that about metal, which is why I've listened to virtually nothing else since 2016. Because no other music makes sense while we slide into fascism.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Garaged Valdez

    Getting to know the unknown I knew little about Dave's issues, but it is impressive to read what the whole band was passing thru in those days... For moments it was painful reading these stories, but the honesty is always something good, even for the bad times... I have come to admire Dave an a lot of Megadeth guys, specially RIP quartet, but I really wish things would had been better up until now, Dave is a great guy, but needs to learn to have better relationships! LOL, no offense, just life is Getting to know the unknown I knew little about Dave's issues, but it is impressive to read what the whole band was passing thru in those days... For moments it was painful reading these stories, but the honesty is always something good, even for the bad times... I have come to admire Dave an a lot of Megadeth guys, specially RIP quartet, but I really wish things would had been better up until now, Dave is a great guy, but needs to learn to have better relationships! LOL, no offense, just life is already hard, but all my love to them and specially to Nick's family, God bless you all!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Patrick Haga

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. One of my all time favorite albums. This book didn't really change my opinion of the music at all. I mean, am I surprised that they were on so much coke and heroin? No. The main takeaway I got from this, is that money kills everything. I'm glad they were able to get Marty's comments, and was a little surprised by all that negative comments about Mustaine (but I mean, not really). Mostly surprised that Mustaine kept them in there, which actually made it a really interesting and honest read.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Sean Begley

    I remember buying "Rust in Peace" by Megadeth at Tower Records, when I was like 12 or 13. I got into music at a really young age, mostly Bon Jovi and Poison. This was like the first "metal" album I picked up. I was blown away by it. It remains one of my favorite albums to this day. Needless to say I was stoked to hear this book was coming out. I do think this book needs to be longer, but it's full of stories, insights and reflections by Megadeth members past and present. A must read for any Mega I remember buying "Rust in Peace" by Megadeth at Tower Records, when I was like 12 or 13. I got into music at a really young age, mostly Bon Jovi and Poison. This was like the first "metal" album I picked up. I was blown away by it. It remains one of my favorite albums to this day. Needless to say I was stoked to hear this book was coming out. I do think this book needs to be longer, but it's full of stories, insights and reflections by Megadeth members past and present. A must read for any Megadeth fan!

  14. 4 out of 5

    Mike

    While it's overwhelmingly obvious that Mustaine got final say in all the disagreements between the various players involved in the creation of Rust in Peace, it's helpful to have quotes from musicians and people around during the album's creation to provide insight into what was happening for the band at this time. In addition, a specific section is set aside where Mustaine goes track by track and calls out some of the small moments as well as his thinking behind the lyrics for each song, which While it's overwhelmingly obvious that Mustaine got final say in all the disagreements between the various players involved in the creation of Rust in Peace, it's helpful to have quotes from musicians and people around during the album's creation to provide insight into what was happening for the band at this time. In addition, a specific section is set aside where Mustaine goes track by track and calls out some of the small moments as well as his thinking behind the lyrics for each song, which was easily my favorite part.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Ashley

    It’s great to read about one of your favorite bands. I loved reading all the technical information about writing the songs as well as the bands struggles with drugs and relationships. You can really feel the emotions in their music and it just makes you want to break down each song even more. It’s written from different members and some of the bands closest critics and family points of view. It’s very interesting to read what each persons thoughts were at the time of recording this album. It mak It’s great to read about one of your favorite bands. I loved reading all the technical information about writing the songs as well as the bands struggles with drugs and relationships. You can really feel the emotions in their music and it just makes you want to break down each song even more. It’s written from different members and some of the bands closest critics and family points of view. It’s very interesting to read what each persons thoughts were at the time of recording this album. It makes you wish they would do this for every album. This book is truly written for the true fans.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Brian Cohen

    Enjoyed the story of the band up to, through and after recording, but there are sections that went on a little too long about drug use (which was way heavier than I realized), Dave’s relationships, and more drug use. I’m always interested in the business side of the bands I love, so I appreciated the discussions of failed lineup reunions. Too bad we lost Nick Menza before he could participate. All in all I’d go 3.5.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Charlie Webster

    This book isn’t for everyone. In fact I would only recommend it to the people who are really into metal and/or Megadeth. It details Megadeth’s struggle to overcome multiple obstacles to make a really good album, Rust in Peace. Unfortunately, the book doesn’t make any of the key players seem likeable. For a good portion of the book, the band members are high, strung out, or insulting each other. All in all, it’s an interesting story, but only if you like Metal or Megadeth.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Romantic Rose

    “Rust in Peace is an album that we wrote in our darkest days and then record in our brightest days with our brightest future.” - David Ellefson I absolutely loved the audiobook. I am so thankful to have a signed physical copy as well. RIP was interesting the whole way through. Rust in Peace is an album that will always have a special place in my heart as a metal guitarist and as a true fan of Megadeth. Thank you Dave, Junior, and Marty for sharing your stories.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Rob

    Dave Mustaine is one of the great talents in rock. He’s also one of the cattiest people it has ever produced. Probably not a great and unexpected insight there, but at least this book showed that Marty Friedman never shared the prolific drug habits of the rest of the band, mostly because he was too busy chasing Asian skirts. We all have our weaknesses.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Joe Attardi

    Rust in Peace is my favorite Megadeth album so I was looking forward to this book. It was a little disappointing. So much of the book is about the band's drug use. In rehab. Using. Out of rehab. Rinse and repeat. Overall though, it wasn't bad and I definitely learned some new tidbits of Megadeth history.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Alex

    This book probably doesn’t deserve the 5 stars I gave it but I can’t help it. This was such a pivotal album for me growing up. I love Megadeth and I love Dave Mustaine. I appreciate his straightforwardness. Read it for what it is, a history lesson about one of the greatest thrash metal albums ever made.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Jakub Jadwiszczak

    the first half reads like parts of Bukowski and Less Than Zero but written by an edgy 13-year-old who's also a shit writer. the second half is just Mustaine complaining about other members of the band. a disappointing "account" of the making of one of the classics of the genre. never meet your heroes?

  23. 5 out of 5

    Ricardo S. Amorim

    Only Mustaine could be credited as an author to an oral history book that Joel Selvin had all the work transcribing and editing. Makes you wonder if the songwriting credits for Rust in Peace are indeed all his, or as the rest of the band intended.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Robert

    Interesting, quick read. Offers some insight into the team involved in one of the best metal albums ever, in an easily-digestible format. Mustaine's last book was a little more "must read" but Rust In Peace is a cool snapshot in time.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Muaddib1406

    Pretty fun read, though not as in-depth as I'd had hoped. The band being all f***ed-up on drugs and egos (especially Mustaine and Friedman) is pretty entertaining, but there is pretty little on the actual songwriting and recording process.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Brian

    I wonder if this macho man is still a raging homophobe...

  27. 4 out of 5

    Nick Cavuoto

    Good stories about the making of a classic thrash album. Lends itself to the audiobook format through entertaining first person accounts.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Chris

    A great behind the scenes tour of the making of the Rust in Peace album.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Dre Cragnolini

    Good insight into this era of the band

  30. 5 out of 5

    Patrick Henry

    true example on why men are better than women

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