Megadeth Risk

There was a time when it wasn't an embarrassment to sport a Megadeth T-shirt as you strolled down the street humming such ditties as "Killing is My Business," "Hanger 18," "Wake Up Dead," "Devils Island" or "Holy Wars." Now the band plays a brand of insipid pop metal so feeble that it's not surprising that the new lead off single "Crush 'Em" will soon be prominently featured at a hockey arena near you. Risk is loaded down with major key progressions, light and airy keys and strings, super-melodic riffs and baser than base lyrical excursions. I know Mustaine will never be confused for Shakespeare, but some of the rambling on tracks like "Insomnia," "Enter the Arena," "Breadline" and "Ecstasy" border on congenital imbecility. It's almost like the band is intentionally dumbing themselves down so as to ensure sales in the trailer parks of the Midwest. (EMI)