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Mustaine: A Heavy Metal Memoir [Hardcover]

Dave Mustaine
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
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Book Description

July 22 2010
From his early, crazy days as a founding member of Metallica, Dave Mustaine has seen and experienced everything in the world of rock n’ roll. From his young triumphs and ignominious ouster from the band for his hard-partying ways to his later rule over Megadeth, one of the most successful heavy metal bands of all time, Mustaine tells it all. Outrageously candid and in-your-face, this is classic rock memoir in the vein of Slash, Motley Crue: The Dirt, and Sound of the Beast—an insider’s look at the loud and sordid world of heavy metal.

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“Entirely awesome.” (Washington Post)

“One hell of a story” (Crawdaddy)

“Dave Mustaine’s memoir is the narrative of a struggling, hard-won music career. It is also a story of survival, redemption and faith... Transcending simple religion and music, Mustaine’s Heavy Metal Memoir will leave you moved and inspired.” (Globe and Mail (Toronto))

“Remorseless.” (Rolling Stone)

“A fascinating and sometimes eye-opening look at Mustaine the man as well as Mustaine the rock star... A must read for Megadeth fans, and highly recommended for metal fans in general.” (

“(Mustaine’s) memoir is honest, certainly - and not without that trademark bite - but there is also considerable maturity in his words.” (The Quietus)

“A must-have for all fans and haters alike” (

“[MUSTAINE] is more tenacious, more introspective, and ultimately more relevant than you’d expect.” (

“A frank and detailed account of the life and times of the infamous vocalist/guitarist/song writer…Mustaine’s account of Megadeth’s early years is told with humor and with real honesty… A riveting read.” (

From the Back Cover

The fall and rise of a heavy metal icon

Dave Mustaine is the first to admit that he's bottomed out a few times in his dark and twisted speed metal version of a Dickensian life.

Impoverished, transient childhood? Check.

Abusive, alcoholic parent? Check.

Mind-fucking religious weirdness (in his case the extremes of the Jehovah's Witnesses and Satanism)? Check.

Alcoholism, drug addiction, homelessness? Check, check, check.

Soul-crushing professional and artistic setbacks? Check.

Rehab? Check (seventeen times, give or take).

Near-death experience? Check that one, too.

James Hetfield, with whom many years ago Mustaine founded a band known as Metallica, once observed, with some incredulity, that Mustaine must have been born with a horseshoe up his ass. That's how lucky he's been, how fortunate he is to be pulling breath after so many close calls. And Hetfield is right. Mustaine has been lucky. He has been blessed. But here's the thing about having a horseshoe lodged in your rectum: It also hurts like hell. And you never forget it's there.

Mustaine has battled through it all to achieve dizzying heights. From the early, heady days of Metallica, being unceremoniously let go only to become a world-famous rock star—founder, front man, singer, songwriter, and guitarist (and de facto CEO) for Megadeth, one of the most popular bands in heavy metal—Mustaine's is a story that will inspire, stun, and terrify.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Heavy Metal Memoir, The Title Says It All Sept. 5 2010
By Tommy Skylar TOP 100 REVIEWER
I've read many rock/metal musicians' autobiographies over the years in hopes to learn more about my favorite artists , Megadeth happens to be on the list of bands that I really like and have strong respect for (especially Mustaine) so this was a must read for me. Honestly, Dave Mustaine's autobiography shouldn't be really all that surprising to anyone who's been a fan of his following him for years; a big part of his life has already been covered (addiction, getting kicked out of Metallica, his drug and alcohol abuses and his conversion to Christianity for examples). Megadeth founder and frontman, Mustaine has been in the rock'n'roll business for years, he's been successful and he's been in incredibly dark places in his life. Mustaine : A Heavy Metal Memoir is a great look at the rock'n'roll lifestyle and the excesses that comes with it. It's very much the good, the bad and the ugly, there's no shortage of any of them in Mustaine's memoir (even if the good is a little rarer). To be honest I expected more ink on the subject of his Metallica exit (make no mistake, he does talk about it quite a few times) and I'm glad that he didn't stop there.

Mustaine comes off as a smart person who's well aware of what he's done. He knows the damage he's done to himself with alcohol and drugs while at the same time hurting others around him. In fact he apologizes for hurting so many people over the years and learned to forgive others (yet you still sense he will never let go of Metallica, however he seems angrier at himself for blowing it). It's interesting to read about feuds Mustaine has had with bands such as Metallica, Slayer (Kerry King only it seems) and Pantera, one way or another it always seems to turn out alright (I'm not saying he was right or wrong).
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By Eron
I've been a Dave Mustaine fan since I was a teenager. I always considered him to be the modern Mozart of our time. The man knows how to write music..

His book is a very comfortable read, and it leaves you feeling very close to him.. I do feel he rushed things a bit at the end however, I would have liked to heard more about his reunion with David Ellefson, and really more about the last 10 years of Megadeth.. He touched on it, but didn't go too deep.. He was also very careful (which is smart these days) to discuss his political views.. He prefers to keep that in his music..

This book is a must read however even for Metallica fans...

I really should give this 5 stars because its so good.. But its just too short!! :) Ironic eh?

Here's hoping he still get's his #1 hit someday..

Thanks Dave for such a great book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Heavy Metal Awesomeness !!! Feb. 24 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I loved this book because of the back stories Mustaine tells so that all of his stories and situations tied together. I always thought of guys like Dave Mustaine as almost otherworldly and to put a human face on himself and relate to what he is,just a guy that has struggles like millions of others.Fantastic read and hard to put down at night !
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5.0 out of 5 stars excellent Aug. 21 2010
As someone who prefers bio`s this one ranks near the top, an inspiring story. After reading this gained a lot of respect and admiration for dave mustaine, makes you want to go out and buy all the megadeth albums you may not own. Only regret didn`t get a chance to go to his book signing. Price can`t be beat.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Metal Up Your A**! Aug. 14 2010
By Rue
This book isn't just for Megadeth fans, but Metallica fans as well... as Mustaine was a founder of both bands, it goes into detail during his time with Metallica and the making of Kill 'Em All. Hell, if you're a heavy metal fan at all, this book is for you. Very interesting and well written! 5/5 stars!!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Buy this it now!!!! Aug. 5 2010
If you are a Megadeth fan and a Dave Mustaine fan this is a must read. Some of the stories have been told before but they do go into further detail here in the book making them all the more interesting. A ton of great pictures and Megadeth/Mustaine moments

A must buy
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4.0 out of 5 stars A book for any Mustaine fan Feb. 5 2014
By Arto345
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This is a must read for fans of Megadeth and Dave Mustaine. He has lived quite a crazy life and has laid it all out in this book.
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3.0 out of 5 stars some interesting parts Dec 26 2013
By mike
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Very convoluted rock star tripe. That being said some interesting insight into the goings on of Mr. Mustaine.
But it's rock n roll so take it for what its worth
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 2 months ago by Pascal
4.0 out of 5 stars Hes not well liked...
....but his memoir is exceptional and I like it a lot. It is well written and paced. I am curious to see Ellefsons book and compare the two. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Bootsy Bass
5.0 out of 5 stars Fastest book I have ever read
Wow, what a great story. Dave lets it all out and holds nothing back. Its truly a great read and throughly written. Its a must for metal fans. Buy buy buy it now.
Published on June 24 2012 by Dan from Vic
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Rocker Autobiography Yet!!!
This is the best autobiography about a rocker yet!! Once I started reading it, I did not want to put it down. I found every page to be entertaining. Read more
Published on Feb. 16 2012 by Phil Curtis
3.0 out of 5 stars Preaching to the converted, and nobody else
Dave Mustaine has long been known as a walking contradiction. His personal feuds with members of Metallica and Slayer notwithstanding, Mustaine blazed a path of self destruction... Read more
Published on Dec 9 2011 by Derek Draven
4.0 out of 5 stars Good book for die hard Megadeth folowers
The most interesting aspect I found after reading Dave Mustaine's autobiography was how the progression of time combined with the abuse of substances had created in Dave's life a... Read more
Published on July 2 2011 by badreligion777
5.0 out of 5 stars Mustaine at his candid, honest best
I began to devour this book while waiting in line to meet Dave and have him sign my copy at a book signing in Toronto in July. Read more
Published on Dec 14 2010 by K. Perez
4.0 out of 5 stars Great read
I've been a casual megadeath fan since I was nine. Never loving everything they've done but always loving some of it. A great read. Read more
Published on Dec 3 2010 by tkarmy
5.0 out of 5 stars Good
Very great book, unlike the man there are no stutters. Whoever he got to write this did a great job. Highly recommended.
Published on Nov. 9 2010 by Obanuba
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent!
Dave Mustaine's Book made me a bigger fan of Megadeth, he is right up front about his life and it is a very interesting read. Read more
Published on Oct. 2 2010 by Neal Kloosterhof
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