In what was erroneously believed to be the last Megadeth album (given the arm injury that caused leader Dave Mustaine to fold the venerable band only a couple of months after this album hit the shelves), Rude Awakening is a far better encapsulation of the band's career to date than the spotty Capitol Punishment compilation. Live discs are fraught with their own limitations, and this double set is no exception. Mustaine's singing abilities were never a strong point; however, even bearing that in mind, the likes of "Train of Consequences" and "A Tout le Monde" find him to be straining and barely keeping up. There are occasional glitches, and the long solos that bridge "She Wolf" and "Reckoning Day" -- highlighted by a Jimmy DeGrasso drum segment that is so repetitive it almost gives you carpal tunnel syndrome just listening to it -- don't add much. Still, Megadeth have helped to pioneer a unique-sounding and very technical thrash style, sticking to their guns through myriad member changes and fashion fads, and at the end of the day, Rude Awakening does nothing to taint that legacy.
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AllMusic Review by Brian O'Neill
Track Listing - Disc 1
Track Listing - Disc 2