MusicRadar.com recently conducted an interview with MEGADETH mainman Dave Mustaine. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
On lineup changes in MEGADETH:
Mustaine: “It would be predictable to say this is the best line up. If you go down the list, it was great to play with James Lomenzo and James MacDonough to remember how good I had it and to see different playing styles.
“They were both really good players but Dave [Ellefson] is the right bass player for MEGADETH. Shawn [Drover, drums] has been in MEGADETH longer than Nick Menza was and I think on this new record he’s played better than he ever has in his life.
“It sounds like he’s a certain metal drummer with a lot of Dave from the FOO FIGHTERS. He was pretty flattered. I didn’t want to say, ‘Hey, you sound like Dave Grohl‘ and he be like, ‘I hate alternative!’ You never know with drummers, they’re unpredictable creatures.
“Then you’ve got Chris Broderick. We had other guitar player come in after Chris Poland and there always was resistance in that shotgun position. They had to play other people’s guitar solos and a lot of the time they would complain and want to improvise it. There is no improvising in MEGADETH. These fans love these guitar parts.
“What would you think if someone went up to do ‘Comfortably Numb’ and did ‘Twinkle Twinkle Little Star’? I remember when Ozzy had come out after Randy Rhoads died. A couple of guys filled in for him and they were good players but they wouldn’t play Randy’s solos and I thought, ‘Shame on you, guys. You can do these solos, respect his legend by learning his stuff.’ Chris plays all the solos note for note.”
On MEGADETH‘s new album, “Super Collider”:
Mustaine: “We have a two-album thing that we do with people. We try to keep things fresh. Sometimes when you have an artistic relationship, it can be chemical in nature and it can become predictable and lose its artistic merit.
“Some people don’t want music, they want me to record ‘Black Friday’ 12 times on a record for the rest of my life. I get it, that’s a ferocious song, but there’s some great stuff on ['Super Collider'], like ‘Built For War’. I love that. I don’t know how I’m going to sing it live, but I love it!”
On writing process for “Super Collider”:
Mustaine: “When I write, I’ll try to figure out how to capture it. Sometimes it’ll be my phone or a recording device. I’ll transfer it to somewhere until I can sit back and listen to it again.
“Part of the first process is locating everything. I’ll be laying in bed and call my voicemail and I’ll go, ‘na na na, na na na, na na,’ with my hand over the phone so I don’t wake my wife up. Several times she’d wake up and say, ‘Who are you calling?!’ So locating the riffs is first and then playing them and translating them to guitar. Then it’s piecing it together. It’s pretty fun.
“Lyrics are usually the last thing that gets done. I’m a stickler for lyrics. I don’t want to sound arrogant, but guitar is fun for me, so it comes natural. The lyric part is where I challenge myself because there’s a lot of people that respect how I write.”
Read the entire interview from MusicRadar.com.