Gary Graff of Billboard.com recently conducted an interview with MEGADETH mainman Dave Mustaine. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
Billboard.com: Did you have any particular vision or creative mission for [“TH1RT3EN”]?
Mustaine: Well, we had such a limited time to do this record. When we came home from touring, we had two months off and my manager [Mark Adelman] basically laid it out that it was in my best interests to consider doing a record in that two-month period, even though it was almost impossible. But what made it a little bit easier was [Roadrunner] was working with us on this. “Sudden Death” was a song we did for “Guitar Hero” that they allowed to be on the record. Then we got an offer to do [the title song for the videogame] “NeverDead”. So we went from needing 13 to having to come up with 11 new songs, which took some pressure off even though we still had to do it in about seven weeks.
Billboard.com: What impact did [producer] Johnny K have?
Mustaine: Andy Sneap wasn’t available, and David Ellefson had recommended him. I didn’t know if he was going to work. I like the bands he’s produced, but they’re not necessarily my genre, not thrash metal. So I didn’t know if he was going to pull it off. But when we first started the record, he said, “I know we’re under a time crunch. If you need my help with anything, just let me know.” We ended up working together great, even on the songwriting. I came out with a really great friend in Johnny.
Billboard.com: This is your last album for Roadrunner, and you’ve been critical of the label in the past. But it sounds like it was better for you this time around.
Mustaine: We have had kind of an up and down time with Roadrunner, but right now everything is good. This album signified the era of, hopefully, a new regime. They were very helpful, and we helped things by putting down some firm boundaries and standing our ground and saying “we can’t do that” when we had to. So I’m very excited, very optimistic about the future.
Read the entire interview from Billboard.com.