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Cryptic Writings Extra tracks, Original recording remastered

4.2 out of 5 stars 195 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Extra tracks, Original recording remastered, July 27, 2004
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Megadeth Megadeth

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Editorial Reviews

Remastered reissue of gold release includes four bonus tracks, 'Trust' (Spanish version - prev. unreleased), 'Evil That's Within' (demo - prev. unreleased), 'Vortex' (Alternate version - prev. unreleased), & 'Bullprick' (prev. unreleased).
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (July 27, 2004)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Extra tracks, Original recording remastered
  • Label: Capitol
  • ASIN: B0002EXH4U
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (195 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #10,304 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Disc 1 is nothing more than the Japanese release of 'Cryptic Writings'. The 2nd disc on the other hand, is called 'Live Trax II', and was recorded in Phoenix, AZ (a.k.a. Megadeth, AZ), right before the release of 'Cryptic Writings'.
The show was recorded in a smaller venue, so you feel as though they are performing a special show just for you. It is a great performance, and the love songs consist of:
1) Almost Honest 2) A Toute Le Monde 3) Sweating Bullets 4) Symphony Of Destruction 5) Anarchy In The U.K.
And then there are 2 remixes which I could care less about of 'Almost Honest'. If you have to have only one of the 2 Live Trax CDs, get the 1st.
But, if your like me and cannot get enough live Megadeth, get this CD! Its worth the $$$!
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Format: Audio CD
This album is an easy 4 stars, but the new remix/remaster is vastly inferior to the original mix. Hunt down the original and avoid this new version at all costs. The reason for the remix/remaster is perplexing because Cryptic Writings was recorded on "state-of-the-art" digital equipment (back in 1997). At only 11 years old, it really amazes me that they would even take the time to remaster, let alone remix it. That being said, the new remix is HORRIBLE. The guitar tone has much more mid and lacks the crunch of the original. Back when this first came out I was trying for months to achieve this type of guitar tone on my amp....it was that good. Well, now it just sounds weak. To top it off, the overall sound is muddy now....if you remember the original mix you'll know that it was very punchy and alive. For a good (stark) example of the difference in quality, just compare the drum intro to Trust for both versions, side by side. It's immediately apparent that the quality and clarity isn't in tact. It's a shame...

This new remix actually deserves only 2 stars at the most, but I couldn't bring myself to give it that low of a rating. 3 stars is generous, and like I said, the original is at least 4 stars.
2 Comments 18 of 21 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Audio CD
I agree with Mr. Costa. This is an exceptionally good album. So it's catchy? Why is that a bad thing? If you want to listen to music with no recognizable melody, go buy some jazz. Just for the record, I have nothing against jazz. I'm just so sick of people complaining about how their favorite bands become too "commercial". I just want to hear great music played by talented musicians. If it's radio friendly, so be it. Just listen to all the Nu Metal crap out there. Those bands don't even compare to Megadeth. Someone said this album is light on solos compared to other Megadeth albums. Well, most guitarists in these newer bands can't even play a decent solo. People in this country have become lazier and lazier and this is reflected in modern metal as well. Dave Mustaine is twice the age of these modern "musicians" and he still rocks twice as hard to this day!!! He's the hardest working metal musician of all time! How many other people could recover from a devastating injury and play guitar with the same intensity that they did 20 years ago? Cryptic Writings is a great album. It is one of the best albums from the nineties.
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Format: Audio CD
In 1996, Dave Mustaine's former band (Metallica) alienated their cult following by releasing "Load," an album which was very commercial, simplified, and alternative. And even though Dave Mustaine and Megadeth would eventually follow suit and release "Risk" in 1999, they first made an album (1997's "Cryptic Writings") which pleased all metal fans, and helped make the Metallica fans less angry. Megadeth's seventh studio album was, at the time, definitely their best effort since "Rust In Peace" came out in 1990. "Cryptic Writings," which is kind of like a combinations of Megadeth's last two albums (1992's "Countdown to Extinction" and 1994's "Youthanasia"), is full of crunchy riffs, memorable hooks, and famous, acrobatic guitar solos from axemen Dave Mustaine and Marty Friedman. "Trust," "She-Wolf," and "Vortex" are all instant `Deth classics, and "Almost Honest" includes an incredible, long, wailing guitar solo. Elsewhere, "Use The Man" begins with acoustic strums and has a rhythm which subtly gains momentum and speed, "The Disintegrators" features fast, stutter-stepping riffs, "I'll Get Even" has a very infectious and memorable sing-along chorus, and "A Secret Place" has a catchy, "Rust In Peace"-esque vibe and rhythm. So, "Cryptic Writings" is definitely another great Megadeth album, it is a mostly successful attempt at returning to the thrash sound of the 1980's, and it is, in my opinion, better than both "Youthanasia" and "Countdown to Extinction." And if Dave Mustaine hadn't made "The System Has Failed" in 2004, this disc would still be Megadeth's best album this side of 1990. Plus, if you buy the remastered edition, you get an unreleased bonus track ("Bullprick") which is also essential for every diehard Megadeth collection.
2 Comments 18 of 23 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Audio CD
This, quite simply, eclipses any of Megadeth's previous work (including their pretty good new album, RISK). The band got a mixture of flack from old fans, and praise from critics on this album, and for once I'm going to side with the critics. As a collection of songs, as heavy metal that's supposed to give you energy, to make you want to rock out, Megadeth has really served up a classic here. Some fans detest this, but this album is truly like Metallica's BLACK album, but better. Now, I love Metallica, and in general like them more than Megadeth (I have ALL the albums by both bands), but this one changed my perspective (and I was let down a little by RISK). Anyways, this is more of a departure from the bands more progressive elements (where YOUTHANASIA really began the move towards a more accessible sound). However, while Megadeth has gone more commercial here, the result is an album that had great success on radio for a reason. "Trust" is Megadeth's best song, period. It's a bit like a catchier "Enter Sandmand". "Almost Honest", "A Secret Place", "Use The Man", this entire album is consistently strong, with the addition of one element that seriously elevates Megadeth's music-hooks! For fans of heavy metal (particularly fans of Metallica's BLACK album), this is a must-have. This is the place to start a Megadeth collection, as their most accessible album. The old stuff, from the PEACE SELLS...BUT WHO'S BUYING period is great, but CRYPTIC WRITINGS, like any truly great album, managed to change my perspective (for the better) of this band forever. My only fear is that they'll never live up to this album again.
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