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Various Artists

The two-disc Gigantour DVD documents a 2005 heavy-metal tour that, in the words of visionary/headliner Dave Mustaine, was "for people who love the guitar solo." In the documentary half, Dream Theater drummer Mike Portnoy describes his technical-ecstasy band as "the Grateful Dead of heavy metal." He's right to a point, though that title is more fitting to Mustaine's Megadeth, the old-school thrash titans who mix blistering hesher metal, jazz fusion, and black magic. But you'll find none of it here. As with most of the groups, Megadeth's three selections are culled from so-so newer albums. The discs consistently fail to present the most interesting parts of the tour. To wit: When members of all the supporting bands join Megadeth for its signature song, "Peace Sells," all we get is a brief clip. Anthrax's reunited '80s lineup appears only on the CD version and briefly in the documentary disc. Dry Kill Logic, Life of Agony, and Symphony X get the shred out, but unimaginative shots do little to capture the ace musicianship the tour celebrates. And crushing performances by mecha-metal pioneers Fear Factory and viking raiders Nevermore are offset by bug-eyed, faux-hawk theatrics from nü-metalers Bobaflex. The tour was way more metal than that.

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D.X. Ferris
Contact: D.X. Ferris