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Mustaine: A Heavy Metal Memoir
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Mustaine: A Heavy Metal Memoir

3.88  ·  Rating details ·  5,396 ratings  ·  344 reviews
New York Times Bestseller

Founding member, singer, and lead guitarist of Metallica and Megadeath shares the ultimate, unvarnished story behind his involvement in the rise of two of the world’s most influential heavy metal bands in history. 

Dave Mustaine is the first to admit that he’s bottomed out a few times in his dark and twisted speed metal version of a Dickensian life.
Hardcover, 346 pages
Published August 3rd 2010 by It Books (first published 2010)
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Nathan Timmel
Dec 26, 2010 rated it did not like it

The main problem I had with it is the same one I had with both Slash's and Anthony Keidis' memoirs: WE GET IT, YOU WENT TO REHAB A LOT. Instead of taking one chapter and devoting it to the numerous times in and out of sobriety, it's done in "real time." So every time he goes into rehab, he writes about it and everything slows to a grinding halt. The other problem I had is the inability of people who replace their addiction to drugs/alcohol to an addiction to religion to understand that's all the
Dirk Grobbelaar
Nov 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-own, guitar
I think there are a lot of positive things that can come from a book like this. There are lessons here, and warnings, more than a few. It takes something to be this candid and open about the mistakes you’ve made, perhaps even more so if you’re Dave Mustaine. If you’ve ever read up about him, or if you’ve followed his career, you’ll know. He owns up to a lot here, generally clearing the water. Let’s face it, there’s only so much you can learn about someone like this on Wikipedia.

This is a confess
Ramakrishnan M
Nov 19, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
There was a time when Megadeth was my favorite-est band; Dave Mustaine (founder, leader, composer, singer, everything), personally, was GOD to me. I loved their aggressive music, I was inspired by their lyrics, and I could never stop talking about Megadeth with friends, family, whoever was tolerant to hear me out. Their music went through tumultuous ups and downs, and my personal tastes moved to more aggressive genres and artists. But, I always remained doggedly dedicated to the old era of Megad ...more
Darrell Reimer
Apr 13, 2012 rated it liked it
It's hard to believe now, but there was a time when Metallica was scary. Not “discomfiting,” “unpleasant,” “grating” or “annoying” — scary. This was a pre-merch era, when kids cut the arms off their jean jackets and used a Bic pen to emblazon that scary band logo on the back. If there was any ink left in that crappy plastic tube, it was applied to the pants. After that, they might add some scary Metallica lyrics to the ink-heavy covers of their notebooks. Today that might be the equivalent of ta ...more
Nov 30, 2010 rated it it was ok
Even I couldn't get behind this. The only thing he admits he failed at in his entire life is bedding Belinda Carlisle.
Dec 21, 2010 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Those who RAWK! (No poseurs!)
My impression of Dave Mustaine before this book was based almost exclusively on two things: his appearance in the rock star deconstruction piece Some Kind of Monster and his appearance on VH1's Rock N Roll Jeopardy. I'll get to the book in a minute, but those are really worth watching:

Some Kind of Monster clip
Rock N Roll Jeopardy clip

Pretty smart guy, eh? Granted, there are first semester ESL students that would have bested Frank Zappa's kid, and George Clinton's pregame ritual clearly failed
Scarlet Cameo
Oct 12, 2015 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Megadeth fans
Recommended to Scarlet Cameo by: Goodreads (dah)
Shelves: rc-15
English review at the bottom

Este es Dave Mustaine

El líder de una “pequeña” banda llamada Megadeth (view spoiler) ex-miembro de otra “pequeña” banda llamada Metallica(view spoiler), y uno de los guitarristas y compositores más influyentes en la e
Randolph Lalonde
Mar 24, 2011 rated it really liked it
I've been a fan of Megadeth since Peace Sells. My love for David Mustaine's sound (he is the lead guitarist, singer, and writer for the band - also the only original member), redoubled when the album "Rust In Peace" came out. I idolized the drummer of that period, Nick Menza, and when the lineup changed again, leaving him out of the band with other members, I found myself asking a lot of questions. Those questions were left mostly unanswered until I read this book.

It's carefully written, and whi
Chris Reading
Jun 07, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Warts and almost all.

Despite his many public whinges, I'm a massive fan of Dave Mustaine. He is one of the most underrated guitarists and song writers out there. The guy has had a difficult and chequered past, through his childhood, to being kicked out of Metallica and rising like a pheonix in the form of Megadeth. The majority of this is covered though this well written and engrossing read. There is much about Dave's childhood and formative years, helping us discover what makes the guy tick. We
David Melbie
Dec 08, 2010 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Fans and addicts
Recommended to David by: my son, Andy
Occasionally I like to read about musicians and their "war stories" and this is a very good story. I have always preferred Megadeth over Metallica, for reasons that have to do with the music itself. After reading this book, I am convinced that Metallica made a big mistake firing Mustaine. Of course, Mustaine still managed to gain success without them, so it all worked out. The important aspect of this story is the triumph of the will, surrendering and changing bad habits. Mustaine is a survivor, ...more
Entertaining enough, but not exactly what I was hoping for. What I really wanted was an in-depth look into the creative process behind Megadeth's music; instead, what I mostly got was detailed account of Mustaine's battles with drug addiction and his revolving-door approach to hiring and firing band members.
Megadeth has always been one of my all-time favorite bands, but I'm not the kind of person to take my fandom to extremes by joining a fan club, collecting live bootlegs, or arguing with hater
Aug 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
I call Dave Mustaine the "Pete Best of Metallica." Just like The Beatles' Pete Best, Dave Mustaine was unceremoniously kicked out of Metallica on the eve of recording their first album. And he has been in mourning about that ever since. At times that becomes a burden to keep reading about. I knew Dave Mustaine had a drinking problem (the primary reason for his Metallica expulsion), but was unaware that he went on to have an even worse drug problem. His relapses and multiple rehabs were a constan ...more
Sep 16, 2010 rated it really liked it
I've cheered him on for over 20 years...great musician - but what a retard. And this book is proof.
I'm glad the book ended the way it did: Dave is still alive, still making music, still married, still learning about Christianity. Go Dave!

I read this biography in 3 days. A fun fast romp through the dark side of the music industry. (is there even a light side?) I've read numerous music biographies: and they're pretty much all the same. Maybe someday Bruce Hornsby will write one; that would be diff
Oct 28, 2010 rated it liked it
Okay, so I kind of feel bad for giving this only three stars. I know, I know Dave Mustaine isn't a writer, he had help-- and my issue is not with the writing or the book, as it's pretty standard for random celebrity biography. It's just that Dave Mustaine comes off as overly fucking unmetal, in a bad way. I don't want anyone to think I want my rockstars filling typical male roles... but they don't have to spend over 100 pages convincing me (but not very convincingly) that they aren't egonmaniaca ...more
Sep 25, 2010 rated it really liked it
I was going to just give it three stars, and say "and a half" at the beginning of this review, but I reconsidered, and decided it does actually deserve the fourth star. This is (hopefully) going to be kind of a long review (if anyone is actually reading my reviews, I realise I've left several hanging with "More To Follow" or "I'll write a long review later" or whatever; hopefully that won't be the case this time), and it might take me several tries to finish it...

In December of 1985, I had jus
Teddy M.
Dec 13, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Dave Mustaine is proclaimed as the godfather of Thrash Metal. If you are a fan of Megadeth and the first Metallica album, Kill Em’ All, then this autobiography, Mustaine, is a must read. Dave goes through his life from point A through z listing his incredible journey from being a poor drug dealer to making his name known in the metal scene. Dave grew up in La Mesa, California, with three sisters and an alcoholic, abusive father. As a kid, he moved a lot because his mother was constantly running ...more
Steve lovell
Oct 29, 2010 rated it really liked it
With musical tastes ranging from the mainstream through to country, I have little knowledge of metal and had no idea who the 'dude' was whose photo graced the cover of this autobiography. So then why read a book about one of the founding members of Metallica and 'owner' of the Megadeth franchise? With a son-in-law who is heavily in to metal and who has managed to convince my daughter to veer into that territory too, when a respected colleague waved Mustaine under my nose and suggested I might li ...more
From one of my top 5 Thrash/Metal bands!!! <\b> <\i>

This starts out from the middle a "realization" that what's going on HAS TO STOP!!! from there we go into the past of a very troubled Childhood/Teen life, to his now LARGER THEN LIFE self.. He tells the hardships of just starting out playing guitar, to the "Forming of Metallica, to his own FASTER, BETTER STRONGER <\i> band that came to be < b > MEGADEATH!!! <\ b > and is very candid with his life during it all
Nov 29, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biografie, 2000, musica
Lo stile è scontato. Così come molto di quanto vi si narra. Tuttavia non è un libro sciatto. Descrive impietosamente, a volte con disgustoso realismo, il cammino di un (ex) ragazzo californiano qualsiasi, con un'infanzia non troppo bella, che ha tratto il massimo dalla sua passione in modo fortunato e fortunoso, sempre camminando a braccetto con una perversa cupio dissolvi; e di come sia infine ... uscito a riveder le stelle. Il racconto ha un pregio di sottofondo: rappresenta in modo involontar ...more
Charlie McKittrick
Sep 04, 2012 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: metal heads and music lovers
Recommended to Charlie by: Chase Bryant
This was a great read. I had trouble putting it down and ended up flying through this book in less than a week; not my typical timeline. It was interesting to hear Dave's side of the story in regard to the early days and this departure from Metallica. He is very open about all of his relationships, alcoholism and drug use and admits as many faults as he does victories. A very exciting, up and down story of a man driven by passion and fired up by music. He definitely lead the Rock and Roll lifest ...more
Aug 02, 2011 rated it it was ok
Mustaine has always been in 2nd place to Metallica both in his head and in mine( well in mine he is much longer down the list). And he deals with that subject a lot through out the book. And tales of drugs and rehab, drugs and rehab and so on. It gets boring after a while and the book isnt very interesting. Its not over the top like "The Dirt" and it doesnt deal much with hte music he has written. Its just bland with a pinch of grey.
Jul 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
گروهی بزرگ و بسیار حیف که گیتاریست بزرگ این گروه مارتی فریدمن دیگر نیست
Aug 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Straight to the point, no sugar coating, intense and insane- just what you'd expect from a heavy metal memoir.
Boz Reacher
Oct 06, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: rock
Oct 14, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you're a thrash metal fan, you should read this.
Oct 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
So Dave Mustaine is definitely an asshole. What makes this autobiography likeable is that he’s honest about how much of an asshole he is, and acknowledges that he did a lot of messed up stuff to people. I tend to believe his hyperbole because he admits to a lot of stuff that he had nothing to benefit from admitting.

I think Megadeth is musically brilliant and getting to read the story of Megadeth’s formation and evolution was interesting. While it was comical at times, it’s a real bummer that Mu
Mark R.
Jan 02, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Excellent autobiography of one of heavy metal's most controversial front men. The book is co-written by a guy named Joe Layden, unfamiliar to me, but I get the impression that Mustaine put most of it together himself. He's a good writer. Megadeth fans already know that, due to his thoughtful, inspired lyrics from the past twenty-five years, but writing song lyrics isn't the same as writing a book--and here Mustaine proves that he's damn good at that too.

The guy's got a reputation, at least in so
Feb 24, 2013 rated it really liked it
I had wanted to read this book for some time, but finally got around to buying the Kindle version when I was given an Amazon gift card for Valentines Day (thanks to my beautiful wife!). Since I'm in the middle of reading another book, I had intended to wait until I was done with that one before starting this one. But I decided to read "just one chapter" to get a taste of it, and ended up tearing through the whole book in just 3 days. I'm not a fast reader, so this is quite an accomplishment.

Apr 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016
Of course you need to be a Megadeth fan for this book to have any value. But I'm a huge one, so here it is. Dave Mustaine obviously doesn't come across as the most well-spoken of dudes, but he does come across way better than any of his other thrash brethren. Dave was always the geek of the thrash world, he put things into words other guys were too cool or dumb to. I love Dave, but he's also a fucking arrogant child.

First off, his goddamn obsession with Metallica. Ok, he was a very important fo
Jul 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
I had the chance to meet Dave Mustaine (and the other members of Megadeth) at an after-concert gathering back in the later part of 1999 while the band was on the Risk tour. Of the four, I found bassist David Ellefson to be the most approachable (actually, he came over to our little group and introduced himself - virtually unheard of when we're talking about a celebrity!), with Mustaine coming in a close second. Even though my actual interaction time w/Mustaine was short - his "heavies" wanted to ...more
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Mustaine is one of the luckiest men to ever live. 3 26 Aug 20, 2013 07:46AM  
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David Scott "Dave" Mustaine (born September 13, 1961) is an American musician, singer, songwriter, actor and author. He is best known as the co-founder, guitarist, and lead singer of the American thrash metal band Megadeth, and well known as the original lead guitarist for the American thrash metal band Metallica.
“Pop and metal aren't friends. Each knows exactly where the other lives and tries to keep its distance. They choose different streets, neighborhoods, zip codes.” 41 likes
“All bands eventually break up because of one or more of the four P's: power, property, prestiege, pussy.” 19 likes
More quotes…