MEGADETH is in the early stages of the songwriting process for the band's new album, which is tentatively expected sometime next year via Roadrunner Records. The CD is once again being helmed by acclaimed British producer Andy "Undie" Sneap, who produced MEGADETH's last album, "United Abominations" (May 2007, Roadrunner Records).
MEGADETH's forthcoming LP will be the group's first with guitarist Chris Broderick, who replaced Glen Drover at the end of last year.
MEGADETH mainman Dave Mustaine has issued the following update via the "Forums" section of the band's official web site:
"I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving. I know I did. I was able to wrangle someone else to come cook for the family, and Pam [Dave's wife] got a reprieve, so she was 'thankful' for that.
"And there really was an 'air' of gratitude this year that has been missing to some degree before. There has always been some deal, or job, or gig, or something that would be interfering with the atmosphere, and this year, it was really the first time that I wasn't 'giving an interview' at the table. My family hates that; and I get uncomfortable talking about myself too. I mean, I do it every day when I am out doing promo tours and press, and it just gets old hearing the same sh*t everyday for them, so I thank our guests for their tact and manners.
"I have been very busy with Justis' [Dave's son] band and trying to get him off in the right direction. His whole world is 'clicking' right now. They have a name they like, got a bassist named Brian that James Lomenzo [MEGADETH bassist] recommended — completing their lineup (although he is just 16 and been in three accidents already), and now it is just investing the 'time' that it takes to get ready to be released out into the world. I hope he has as much fun as I have, and that he refrains from making the mistakes I did. Although I still stand by the things that I believe in, some of the stuff I did was the stuff that kids do. And the bad stuff was fun sometimes too.
"Today is an 'off day' at the studio. Andy and Shawn [Drover, MEGADETH drummer] are both gone; they have been since Wednesday, but I have been in the studio every day on my own working on stuff with James and without him (what a solid guy!), and I think that the last two days I have made some slight-to-vast improvements on some of the four songs we were working on already. I am getting ready to start cutting the remaining eight songs when Andy gets back, and then we will start the process of tracking and overdubbing all the parts for our hopeful 2009 release. Remember, there has been some setbacks due to visa applications, and while that is sorted out now, we have lost precious time and will no doubt have tremendous difficulty finishing this record before we leave for the Priest Feast UK/Euro tour in February.
"I have been having a lot of fun listening to old MEGADETH and IRON MAIDEN, as well as BUDGIE and loads of old AC/DC; you know, all the stuff that made me a lil snarler when I was starting MEGADETH. We now have a focus and a vision for this record and while I have not heard the other band members' stuff, I look forward to seeing if we are going to find any 'magic.' I did hear Shawn's stuff from three years ago, and some of James' older stuff, so I look forward to next month when everyone returns to Vic's [Garage, MEGADETH's newly built recording studio] and hearing if they are going to give me the same stuff twice like Nick [Menza, former MEGADETH drummer] used to do, or if they have new stuff.
"In the meantime, I tried a new prototype piece of equipment that I have been modifying for years, and now the company has taken the 'mod' and done it themselves in the factory (actually the company's patriarch had done this many years earlier I am told, and that is where I believe I got my original inspiration, so we are just really completing the circle, for the purist or archivist, and I am one happy headbanger!) Not only does it sound devastating, it looks like a stealth bomber had this cut out of its body. It just needs after-burners blasting 15 foot flames out the front of it for realism... so you can get the full effect I feel.
"I now have my ultimate weapons and tools and am ready for another world tour. Who's coming with me?
"Back down at the Garage yesterday, Justis and I were in punching some overdubs on some guitar and bass ideas (he wasn't playing, I was), and although I wish I knew more about Pro Tools than I do, I have to say that I am really stoked with the product, and I LOVE Digidesign's Eleven software. You will without a doubt be hearing this new product in the months to come once some of the record, or a teeny piece of it are uploaded for you to get a peek at and if you see me live.
"There has been so much great stuff in the news headlines to write about, that I am left with a confusing mess of what to write about. This record is going to be a 'your guess is as good as mine' lyrical offering. Is it political, is it military, is it personal, is it spiritual, occult oriented, what, wHaT, WHAT?!?!
"Well, all I know is that just like my name and my music are on record with my last band, indubitably with my new band, and it is ridiculous to think otherwise, the same can be said about anything I play; I have my own sound and style. I am grateful that I have my own style. There is a sea of a thousand bands that all sound the same right now. They look the same, dress the same, wear the same chick's eyeliner, the same chick's 'chicks' nail polish (but you have to scrape it off so you look tough, instead of looking like a, er, whatever) and we all know that nail polish makes you play faster, better, quicker, more, AND if you order now . . . uh, oh yeah, what was I saying? I seem to have gone tentacular again.
"Oh yeah, sh*t bands that look the same. Well, fortunately with a six-foot-plus raging native American [referring to TESTAMENT's Chuck Billy], a bald Englishmen on a motorcycle [referring to JUDAS PRIEST's Rob Halford], and a skinny red-headed 'me' — we of Priest Feast visually ain't got much in common. Except when it comes to 'Delivering the Goods,' as the boys in JUDAS PRIEST say. I really am looking forward to seeing Eric [Peterson] and the boys in TESTAMENT, as well as Glenn Tipton and JUDAS PRIEST. I must confess that Glenn was a superstar to me when I first discovered JUDAS PRIEST, and I even bought a Fedora (hat) because he was wearing one on the back of 'Sad Wings of Destiny'. We have had some good times while on the 'Painkiller' tour and I hope to be able to return the favor, now that I have more than two nickles to rub together.
"I am going to spend the day immersed in music again and until I feel this record is done. Sadly, that may mean later as opposed to sooner. But I know that Roadrunner is supportive, and since the visa problem has been sorted out, we are going to do our best to make you the greatest MEGADETH record ever. I know that there are people that already are saying it won't happen, but I mean, come on. . . who sets out to do anything second-best? Not even my favorite losing football team, the Oakland Raiders, are that bad. I mean, we all want to win, and some of the things that mattered to me then, don't matter anymore, or some that didn't matter then, they matter now.
"Life changes, and that is why people move on as fans. As soon as someone moves on from MEGADETH, there is another new fan — young and old — just waiting to discover these mind-blowing guitar songs. Yes, I consider them guitar songs, because I am not a hit-song writer. I write songs for the guitar, and although I did try my hand at writing for radio, and I did have several Top 20, Top 10, Top 5, and one No. 1 single in America, I like to play the stuff that makes you say, 'How does he do that and sing?' I have to have one thing in life that I am good at beside just shredding and snarling. Funny, how quickly people forget all of the success I have had (me included).
"I am going to try to speed read several books for some lyrical inspiration. I can do that — what a cool thing too. I took the Evelyn Wood's speed reading thing many, many years ago. There is probably something else by now, but what a blessing to be able to learn how to read fast; especially fiction. I have to go down now and feed Rocky, my miniature horse. He kicked Electra [Dave's daughter] the other day, and that made me mad at him, and Pam is such a horse person, she said what happened and it totally made sense. I still am upset that my little girl got kicked by a horse though.
"I started doing the widgets finally, so I will answer some more of those on Monday, as well as keep you posted here and at our MFC site (our MegaFanClub [MEGADETH's official fan club]).
"I have a challenge for you... see if you can do something random, something kind and post it at the MEGADETH forums. Along with our usual guest list, I am getting ready to make a list of the fans that impress me, that we are going to be giving out limited backstage passes for Priest Feast, and Gigantour in The States and Canada next year, and I am impressed by all kinds of stuff. Anything that you can think of, from a teacher that is good to you and your class or school that you think would deserve being recognized; or someone in your circle or maybe your neighborhood that has really overcome adversity; or someone who you think is a hero or a special person in your community. These passes will, of course, only be for the areas that we have control over and can give out passes to, but I wanted to see you and meet you, I want to know who of our fans are making a difference.
"I have met a doctor in El Paso, Texas that does operations inside of pregnant women on fetuses with heart problems, I have had star athletes in baseball, football, hockey, and MMA, I have had NYPD and NYFD members honor us with their presence at our concerts (although we were visiting firehouses long before 9/11 and knew that the first-responders were heroes long before our nations tragedy during the Bush years). I even just got a MMS sent to me from a brain surgeon in California and he said that they listen to 'Symphony of Destruction' before every brain surgery.
"I think the best ones are when I get something from that one lonely student, sent away to break to chains of economic failure in his family, or the kid that is at home and locked in his room because of abusive parents or step-parents or the mom's drunken, drugged out new boyfriend that beats him/her (this has happened on more occasions than I would like to count), or the young men and women sent over to the Middle East for who knows what anymore, and even from people who are stuck behind the 'metal wall of intolerance' in their countries; like metal fans in Lebanon, Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, some parts of the U.A.E., and so on and so on. I remember the first time we were at war with Lebanon, and I had just met a Lebanese fan.
"I felt very odd... here I am standing with a person who is by descent and due to the war, my enemy, yet MEGADETH music had crossed his borders long before and made an impression on him enough to want to say hello. And it takes guts to walk up to someone when you know they are at war with your country and say 'anything!' I felt an awkward bond, even toe-to-toe with a fan because of his descent from a place the U.S. was at war with, nonetheless, slight as it was, I felt a bond. At that exact moment, I knew what I was to be trapped by your countries politics. And we have gone to play places that I never thought we would play, like Israel, Turkey, Dubai, India, Indonesia, Thailand, Singapore, and I have a short list of other hot-spots I would still like to play, but it is for the young people of these countries.
"I think I have had enough coffee for today.
"Please take care and have a great week. I look forward to what y'all come up with. We will lay out all of the criteria for verifying your claims, and... helping an old granny across the street doesn't count, because YOU SHOULD BE DOING THAT!"
MEGADETH will embark on the "Priest Feast" European tour in February 2009 with headliners JUDAS PRIEST and openers TESTAMENT.