10 Heavy Metal Albums By Bands Thought Past Their Prime

You might not be able to teach an old dog new tricks, but they may shock you with a sick new riff.

lemmy motorhead
© Simone Cecchetti/Corbis

The cold embrace of time, sadly, waits for no one. As seasons change, days turn into nights, and the world decays into the horrifying dystopia we see before us, our tastes and interests develop as we mature and grow as people. No media is perhaps more affected by this than music.

Most of us are guilty of an emo phase, wondering if we were born in the wrong era after slipping into a Beatles-shaped rock 'n' roll obsession, or uhn-tiss-ing your teenage years away with rave culture. But, as we grow older, some of it just doesn’t hit the same as it used to, becoming nostalgia fodder for '90s nights at your local nightclubs. The artists are often the victims in all this, trying (and typically failing) to keep up with trends and socio-political climates to remain relevant and appealing.

For the following ten acts, in particular, it looked like their time in the sun was done. They made their mark, made some cool patches for you to put on your battle vest, and it was time to fade away gracefully into that sunset. Except no, they were not through with us yet, and returned to hit new career bests and highlights to warm the hearts of regular ol’ punters like you and I.

10. Megadeth - Endgame

Owing to the chaotic nature and temperament of band leader Dave Mustaine, Bay Area thrash metal icons Megadeth have had to reaffirm exactly who they are on more than one occasion.

2004's 'The System Has Failed' was initially touted as the band's return to form, following Mustaine's return from an arm injury and a run of albums that shall be described for now as "a bit rubbish" (honestly though, what in the 90s scat sandwich was 'Risk'?). However in reality, 'The System...' was just another humdrum album in a sequence that began in 1994 of the band spinning their wheels, as the popularity of heavy metal was at its lowest since the 60s.

The true resurgence of Megadeth came in 2009, with the release of the Andy Sneap-co-produced 'Endgame'. A more refined recording method, greater input from Sneap, and an introduction of prolific speed/power metal guitarist Chris Broderick, all culminated in the explosive riff and solo-laden album, headlined by the can't-miss "Head Crusher". 'Endgame' built on many of the exciting teases heard in its predecessor 'United Abominations', renewed Megadeth's status in the world of heavy metal, and arguably, restarted the want from fans to see a Big 4 of Thrash show - which we'd finally get two years later.


Wish.com Jules Gill. Pretty fond of heavy music, Arsenal, video games and wrestling.