This Day in Music History – Dagan Thogerson on Megadeth

Tomorrow marks the release of the 25th Anniversary Edition of Megadeth’s landmark album Peace Sells. Telling us how this album helped him become the man he is today, is Dagan Thogerson, drummer and all around party captain of Murder by Death.

Go grab the nice dishes and the cloth napkins, the Silver Anniversary of Megadeth’s thrash metal almost-a-masterpiece “Peace Sells, But Who’s Buying?” is upon us, and it’s time to celebrate.


The first time I ever heard of Megadeth was when I read their name on a wooden picnic table at the park by my house. It was carved into the table, accompanied by a definition of the word written in black marker. The definition read something like: A unit used in quantifying the casualties of nuclear war, equal to the deaths of one million people.


I was about twelve and it sounded scary as hell.


I wouldn’t start listening to metal until I was 14, when my big sister’s boyfriend dubbed (remember that word?) me a copy of Metallica’s black album. I liked it because I was learning to play the drums, and Lars Ulrich is a pretty sucky drummer, so I could play his drum parts. It was good for practice.


The next dubbed cassette I got was Peace Sells and it stayed in my tape deck for months. At the time I was an aspiring metal drummer. I had a double bass pedal, a nine piece drum kit, and a huge Pantera poster on the wall next to it. I would put Peace Sells in the tape deck and jam along to it with the volume super high.


Dave Mustaine’s snarky one liners, stupid lyrical puns, and general sweeping political commentary have certainly gotten out of hand by now (see their newest record “Endgame”, the only song worth a shit is an instrumental), 1986 Dave Mustaine is more charming and fun.


Quote from the song Good Mourning/Black Friday: “I don’t feel so good/something’s not right/something’s coming over me/what the fuck is this?/Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!”


What’s not to love about that? He kinda sings like a pissed off cat. A cat who can shred a guitar as well as anyone and better than most. Each of the seven original tracks on this album (we must overlook the cover of Howlin’ Wolf’s “I Ain’t Superstitious”, it’s stupid) has about fifty different awesome riffs in it, and about fifty awesome guitar solos too. Remember the sweet bass guitar riff that was the theme song to Mtv News? Me too.


Even though Megadeth wouln’t reach their full potential for another five years with the perfect thrash metal masterpiece Rust In Peace, they were still very near the top of their game with Peace Sells. I watched them in concert play the album Rust in Peace in it’s entirety, but they still closed the show with the song Peace Sells. You know when you’ve written a winner.


And thanks to the magic of the internet and some supreme metal fandom from YouTube user thegeatbungholio707 – here is the entire album, track by track, for your enjoyment.


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