MEGADETH mainman Dave Mustaine was interviewed on the November 13-15 edition of Full Metal Jackie’s nationally syndicated radio show. You can now listen to the chat using the Podbean widget below. A few excerpts follow.
Full Metal Jackie: MEGADETH’s fifteenth studio album, “Dystopia”, is coming out in January. Dave, do you feel eager, excited or something else as one of your albums gets closer to being released?
Dave: Yeah, this is really exciting. Every new release date always is exciting. You know, it’s like people who have had a kid. It’s a great feeling watching this whole thing take process — the whole creation to birth and then to see how it does. You know, no one really knows how a record’s gonna do. You have hopes for it, but… Yeah, I think we all have really high hopes for this one.
Full Metal Jackie: Dave, what effect did recording with different musicians, specifically guitarist Kiko Loureiro and drummer Chris Adler, have on both the album and the band?
Dave: Well, it depends. The degree that they influence a band is up to the degree of willingness and open-mindedness of people who are in charge of writing and producing the record. Someone can be absolutely the greatest musician ever, but if his talents aren’t allowed to shine, if you don’t use those talents, they are never materialized and it’s another lost opportunity. For me, I like looking at different guitar players, some most people wouldn’t necessarily look at. You know, look at Marty Friedman, look at Chris Poland, look at Kiko — they’re all people who are kind of off the beaten path, but they’re all interesting in their own unique ways. Chris [Adler], on the other hand, is totally a powerhouse and his style is very reflective of MEGADETH’s early years when we had a more jazz-oriented approach towards metal, which I think MEGADETH’s has always had more of a jazzier feel. So it’s great to be able to revert back to that more jazz-oriented metal approach with the rhythms.
Full Metal Jackie: Dave, you’ve stated that you wanted to return to your roots and make a trash album. What initially got you in that mindset?
Dave: Well, just because you say you wanna do something like that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s gonna happen. [Laughs] You know, there’s been a lot of times I’ve said that over the past, and, for whatever reason it just didn’t materialize. Sometimes it had to do with me, sometimes it had to do with others. But I think that, for the first time now, we’ve actually really embraced that part of us that made us a thrashier band. A lot of it was how we were feeling and the way that we were looking at our lives at the time and just being… You know, instead of being disappointed… There’s a difference between having a bad situation and being depressed versus having a bad situation and being pissed and doing something about it.
Full Metal Jackie: What do you reminisce about most when it comes to younger years when you started playing music?
Dave: [Laughs] Well, there’s a lot of things that I think about from those younger years, a lot of the technique playing. Sometimes I’ll joke with myself and say, “What was I thinking when I wrote that riff?” Because some of them are pretty challenging, and I just kind of wondered what it was I was experiencing at the time, because my music has always been really kind of like a… I think a lot of my psychosis at the time — how I’m feeling, what I’m dealing with — you can usually tell by listening to the music. If I’m depressed, if I’m [angry], if I’m excited about something, if I’m going through some personal victories or challenges or whatever, it’s always there in the music.
Full Metal Jackie: Dave, there was much speculation that the Rust in Peace lineup might regroup. How much consideration was actually given to that idea?
Dave: By myself or by everybody?
Full Metal Jackie: By yourself.
Dave: By myself, not as much as everyone else. I think that the reason behind that wasn’t really the same for some of us. And I just wasn’t really into it. I kind of liked the way things were in the history books, you know, the way that the fans had their own experience with the records and that stuff. And I kind of wanted it to leave there, because if you’re gonna go back and touch the hallowed ground like that, you’ve gotta do it at least as good or better, and I just don’t think that us going and making a repeat of something that we’ve done in the past would honor any of our legacies — who we are, where we are right now with our playing and our songwriting and stuff like that. Do I still care about those guys? Of course I do. I think they’re nice guys and I wish the best for them and I always have. Just because we don’t get along musically doesn’t mean that you want something bad to happen to any of your old friends.
Full Metal Jackie: Dave, what’s different these days about the things that give you a feeling of creative satisfaction when you’re in the studio?
Dave: There’s a lot of things that give me creative satisfaction in the studio. It’s just listening to what my heart says. And sometimes there’ll be certain rifts, there’ll be certain parts that feel good. Sometimes they’ll sound good that day, and then the next day you go into the studio and they’re just not the same. It’s, like, “Hey, that was a great idea.” Well, good thing there’s a mute button. [Chuckles]
Full Metal Jackie: Dave, what can we expect in terms of touring here in the U.S.?
Dave: Well, we’re hoping to get some answers pretty soon about what our lineup is gonna look like, with who is gonna be playing with us and when we’re gonna be touring. We’ve got some pretty good ideas of what’s going on right now. Chris Adler is sitting in for us on some dates, and we’re still kind of looking at the opportunities that are in front of us, and we’ll make our decision and we’ll go from there. And I’ll tell you this much: we’re very excited about what’s going on for 2016 and into the summer of 2017.
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