(DTE Energy Theatre, Clarkston, MI - July 8th, 2013)
Formed in Los Angeles, CA back in '83, Megadeth has since released an amazing 14 studio albums. A pioneer of the American thrash metal movement, Megadeth rose to international fame in the 1980s and is ranked as one of the "Big Four of Thrash" along with Metallica, Slayer and Anthrax, who were responsible for creating, developing and popularizing the thrash metal sub-genre.
Performing here tonight as the headliners on their very own Gigantour date, the sporadically organized traveling heavy metal music festival brought forth Black Label Society, Device, Hellyeah, Newsted and Death Division before Megadeth took to the stage.
And so as the current band members of Megadeth (Dave Mustaine – Vocals, Guitar; Chris Broderick – Guitar, Backup Vocals; Dave Ellefson – Bass; and Shawn Drover – Drums) take to the stage one by one (as over the band's 30 active years, more than 20 different people have officially performed as part of the group!) it's the only constant member Mustaine who delays his own entrance. Side stage, just his guitar neck showing, gently swaying, he suddenly marches out. Playing in full stride, his strawberry blonde hair flowing and covering most all his face he heads to the mic stand.
Kicking off with one of their biggest hits 'Trust,' without breath they plough on through 'Hangar 18,' 'Kingmaker,' and then both 'She-Wolf' and a song that gets a rousing welcome, 'Countdown to Extinction.' Mustaine paces the stage in a slow, brooding manner, his hair constantly over his face, his eyes shut tight as he grumbles into his mic. And that's something that I noticed all too often last night the fact that he doesn't shout when he sings. Far from it, he barely opens his mouth. I never knew that before. But have to say I also thought his vocals could/should have been turned up a wee bit too.
Moving on and we get thunderous cuts such as 'Architecture of Aggression,' the beloved 'Sweating Bullets,' 'Ashes in Your Mouth,' 'Dawn Patrol,' and then both 'Poison Was the Cure' and 'A Tout Le Monde.' With the horrible weather having reduced the audience down to only a few hundred in this 9,000 outdoor venue, Mustaine never once paid mention to it - although it was obvious as he looked around he knew the fact.
Known for its distinctive, technical instrumental style that often features dense, intricate passages and trade-off guitar solos, Megadeth never take any musical prisoners and plow on with 'Whose Life (Is It Anyways?),' 'Public Enemy No.1,' the title cut from their new album 'Super Collider,' and then a brilliant, stunning cover of 'Cold Sweat' from the great Thin Lizzy.
Ellefson's bass provided another standout moment as the band wrapped up 'Symphony of Destruction' and Ellefson then again launched into the iconic opening bass line of 'Peace Sells' to close out the main set. Coming back on to perform the stoic 'Holy Wars ... The Punishment Due,' the band then came front stage, took a group bow, waved, drum sticks were thrown, and that was that for the wet and humid MI night.
Review & Photos by: Russell A. Trunk