Youthanasia is the sixth studio album by American heavy metal band Megadeth, released on November 1, 1994. A remixed and remastered version, featuring several bonus tracks, was released in 2004.
It saw Megadeth continuing a trend toward slower, more melodic hard rock songs which began with their commercial breakthrough album, Countdown to Extinction. Lyrically, the album displays a variety of influences: mythology ("Elysian Fields" and "Blood of Heroes"), rape and incest ("Family Tree"), nuclear war ("Black Curtains"), gambling ("Train of Consequences", which can also be seen on the video), and a hit about the last moments in life, "À Tout le Monde". The title is a pun on euthanasia, implying that society is euthanizing its youth, which would be consistent with bandleader and principal songwriter Dave Mustaine's views. The closing track, "Victory", refers to many of the band's previous songs throughout its lyrics.
Megadeth's previous album, Countdown to Extinction, was tremendously successful and the band was faced with the daunting task of making an album to follow it. It was a time of problems and conflicts for Megadeth, in that every two weeks or so according to Mustaine, there were "outrageous emotional interventions" in order to make the group a democracy. Many band meetings during this period concerned Mustaine's creative control over a "successful formula", so that the band could better exercise their creativity.
Another problem was the indecision on where the recording would take place. Mustaine did not want to record in Los Angeles, so the band eventually decided to record in Phoenix in the home state of the majority of the band, Arizona. They began recording in Phase Four Studios (the studio in which the 2004 remaster was remixed) in March 1994, but due to problems they left and decided to find another studio. There were no likely choices in Phoenix, so producer Max Norman suggested building a studio of their own. The construction process was recorded on Evolver - The Making of Youthanasia. As of 2010, this is the only Megadeth album recorded in E-flat guitar tuning (guitar strings tuned down half a step). All preceding and subsequent albums are in standard tuning, with the exceptions of a few songs on other albums. Live performances of the songs from the album are also played in standard tuning, except for "Train of Consequences".
2004 Remaster bonus tracks
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