Review

Guitarist Chris Poland was an original member of Megadeth, and helped to make them one of the most exciting guitar bands of the early thrash metal scene. After being fired from the band for drug use (ironically, the equally strung-out Dave Mustaine did the firing), Poland went underground for a while, cleaning up and doing a low-profile tour with the Circle Jerks as the band's bassist(!). Return to Metalopolis finds the highly underrated guitarist returning to form on a lean, muscular instrumental album. The opener, "Club Ded" (the title a clever nod to his former band), immediately makes it apparent just how integral Poland's voice was to the early Megadeth sound; his tone is truly unique, and his flair for chord voicings lift him above most of his power-chord riffing brethren. His soloing style is fluid, tasteful, technically exciting, and totally recognizable. Poland, an intelligent player, obviously draws inspiration from Jeff Beck and other guitarists who predate the '80s heavy metal scene, and values tone and taste as much as volume. Poland's brother Mark provides crisp, inspired drumming which locks in perfectly with Chris' airtight rhythms. This album is obviously a labor of love for Chris Poland, who is glowing in his newfound sobriety. ~ Andy Hinds, Rovi

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