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THE BIG FOUR SONG CHALLENGE SERIES - Matchup 183

Anthrax "This Battle Chose Us!" (2016) VS Megadeth "Last Dying Wish" (2016) VS Metallica "Lords Of Summer" (2016) VS Slayer "Atrocity Vendor" (2015)

"This Battle Chose Us!" may be the only song that was placed correctly in the track order for "For All Kings", because it's that slower, more thoughtful conclusion before the thrash ending where the album blows its wad.  (Okay, two songs were placed correctly.  Spoilers.)  And then in the back half, it becomes the song where the album tries to blow its wad in a mad blast of energy.

"Last Dying Wish" is kind of ham fisted and it takes awhile to get into the choppy rhythm, but I can actually relate to the lyrics.  It's about the need to prove yourself and seize opportunity; the impulse to conquer, to be the best.  I mean, I only remember those drives as phantoms of a foolish youth when I believed such victories were possible, but I do remember them. 

Anyway, now that we got that goth bullshit out of the way, we have our first of two re-recordings.  The original version of this song was 8:21 and featured a The in the title, but now it's 7:10 and called "Lords Of Summer".  Considering my initial criticism of "The Lords Of Summer" (2014) was that it had no business being eight minutes, Metallica have certainly made this okay song better.  It's actually good now.  In fact, this is better than most of the album.  It has all the strengths of the good songs on "Hardwired" but with an addition missing from most of them: personality.  Also, it's kind of interesting to think of this as the positive counterpoint to a lot of doom and gloom lyrics metal has purveyed over the years.  In interviews, Metallica has espoused that "Battery" was about the positive and negative which is good in theory, but there was never much positivity in their lyrics before.  (Or in Microsoft Works, apparently, as it doesn't think "positivity" is a word.)

"Atrocity Vendor" is the best song on "Repentless".  Unfortunately for the band going forward, it's a re-recording of a song that was a B-Side from "World Painted Blood", and it was the last new song they released while Jeff Hanneman was still alive.  The difference between this and the rest of the album is kind of startling.

"Lords Of Summer": 4
"Atrocity Vendor": 3
"This Battle Chose Us!": 2
"Last Dying Words": 1

UPDATE TOTALS:

Metallica: 37
Anthrax: 36
Megadeth: 32
Slayer: 25

ALL TIME TOTALS:

Anthrax: 474
Metallica: 461
Slayer: 454
Megadeth: 417

Only two more left.  Place your bets.

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