Often, when an artist known for making extreme music makes an album that's less extreme, cries of "sell-out" abound. Fans of the new music however defend it as "musical growth, exploration, and change." What these fans don't realise is that there's no reason to become less extreme in order to achieve growth, to explore, or to be different. MD .45, consisting of Megadeth's Dave Mustaine on the guitars (and also as the producer), Fear's Lee Ving doing the vocals, Jimmy DeGrasso on drums, and Kelly LeMieux on bass, is proof-positive of this. Their first album, The Craving, mixes metal and punk in a raw, ferocious, and aggressive manner. I think it is different from anything both Fear and Megadeth have done, and fairly heavy at the same time.
MD .45 is referred to as a side-project of Dave Mustaine, and it's evident that he has made the most contributions to this record in terms of some great rhythm (and lead) guitar work and the overall crunchy sound. But this project also gains its uniqueness from Ving's coarse vocal style, DeGrasso's staccato drumming and LeMieux's funky bass work. Both the metal and punk aspects of the music in this album are somewhat traditional in execution. In the case of metal, it's reminscent of the the New Wave of British Heavy Metal, with the songs sounding a bit like the stuff by early Judas Priest and Iron Maiden. With regards to punk, it's reminscent of Black Flag's aggressiveness and Minor Threat/Fugazi's sophistication. The major gripe I have about this album is the quality of the production, which sometimes doesn't blend the vocals and guitars in well. Aside from that, I think both fans of early Megadeth (pre-RiP) and Fear are bound to want to bang their heads to this release.