Megadeth in PH: 'Thrash metal like orgasm'

By Jackie Dosmanos

Posted at Jul 29 2012 12:49 PM | Updated as of Jul 29 2012 08:50 PM

The members of the heavy metal band Megadeth meet the media on Saturday for their concert tonight in Manila.

MANILA, Philippines -- Heavy metal band Megadeth, who will rock the World Trade Center in Pasay City Sunday night, July 29, lives, breathes and will probably die by thrash metal, with their boots on.

Megadeth frontman and guitarist Dave Mustaine was a pioneering member of Metallica. He was unceremoniously kicked out of Metallica after two albums, “Kill ‘Em All” and “Ride The Lightning” where his driving riffs and savage speed gave rise to thrash.

Mustaine regrouped with Megadeth, and with their debut, cemented his claim to fame as thrash metal pioneer.

Megadeth kept on thrashing for the next two decades while Metallica would go on to make million-selling records like “Master of Puppets” and “The Black Album.”

Last year, Metallica released a mind-boggling collaboration with punk godfather Lou Reed. Two years earlier, Megadeth put out the much-lauded “Endgame” where Mustaine and company displayed their consistency in writing smart politically aware lyrics matched by technically demanding yet powerfully melodic loud music.

Megadeth’s latest album entitled "Th1rt3en" proves Megadeth is the only game in the thrash metal universe.

New tracks like “Sudden Death”, “Public Enemy” and “Black Swan” recoil with the eardrum-melting squall of “Killing Is My Business...And Business Is Good!” and “Countdown to Extinction in the early ‘90s yet they deliver their unique payload of shock rock for the uninitiated and old fans alike.

At the press conference on Saturday, Mustaine was asked how he’d describe thrash metal to a non-heavy metal listener? He quickly replied, “Like an orgasm!”

It must be a source of multiple orgasmic delight for the band to keep on thrashing, album after album over the past 20 years.

Megadeth bassist Dave Ellefson thinks the band’s best songs remain valid over the long haul. He says, “The song 'Peace Sells…But Whose Buying' was written in 1986 and it is still relevant today. It is our favorite among the many Megadeth has recorded over the years.”

It is also the song that Mustaine alludes to in response to a recent fuss about his becoming a Christian again. He elaborates, “I was a Christian before everybody made a big deal out of it. Just listen to the lyrics of 'Peace Sells' (which opens with 'What do you mean, 'I don't believe in God'?/I talk to him every day.') I think, we all believe in a God, to some extent.”

He is more straight-forward with the lessons behind Megadeth’s lasting longevity. His advice to musicians: “Be honest with yourself. And don’t screw the fans! We treat them like partners.”

When he hooked up with Metallica again at the Big 4 Metal Reunion Concert Series, he can only describe the reunion thus, “We’re fine. We’re actually closer to Slayer and Anthrax because we played in more gigs with them.”

When not thrashing in the studio or on a live gig, Megadeth members listen to experimental rock and jazz. Progressive instrumental rockers Animals As Leaders and Periphery are among the favorites as well as jazz where the music appears to be going in different directions all the time.

Mustaine openly admits that Megadeth should have played in the Philippines a long while back. To make amends, he promises that their performance tonight will be real surprise.

After the ongoing world tour, Megadeth will fly to South America in September to play the "Countdown to Extinction" album in celebration of the 20th year of its making. It is an epochal album to Mustaine since it was made during the time of Rodney King race riots where L.A. was virtually on fire.

He is amused by the thought of recreating those tense days when Megadeth mounts "Countdown to Extinction" in its entirety.