Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Mustaine + Hetfield + Ulrich + Ellefson = ???

Right, it seems I have been doing actual work or something and accordingly have slightly neglected my blog over the past month or so.

But this particular piece of news was just too intriguing not to comment on.  It turns out that Dave Mustaine has been throwing around the idea of a supergroup, involving him, Megadeth bassist David Ellefson, and Metallica's James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich.

To be fair, at this stage it seems it's still very much just an idea.  No-one's said yes or no, and in all fairness, MegaDave has been prone to the occasional flippant statement.  But you get the sense Mustaine is actually slightly serious about this - 5 or 10 years ago people would have laughed at the idea, but the world has changed since then.  The Big 4 shows have not only featured both bands on the same bill, but actually on the same stage at the same time, with a group jam becoming a staple of Metallica's Big 4 set.  And by all accounts it sounds like everyone is getting on famously backstage.  And Christian Dave just seems way less angry at, well, everything than old-school-hardcore-on-the-drugs-Dave.

So, it's actually not inconceivable.  And the proposed line-up - Mustaine, Hetfield, Ulrich and Ellefson - makes a lot of sense too.  Mustaine and Ellefson are the obvious choices from Megadeth - both founding members and Ellefson is second only to Mustaine in terms of Megadeth's creative contributors too.  And James and Lars have always been Metallica's creative axis, so that makes sense too.

This is not to say that Robert Trujillo isn't an extremely good bassist, or that Chris Broderick isn't an astounding guitarist.  But Trujillo, Broderick, and Megadeth drummer Shawn Drover weren't with their respective bands during their heyday in the 80's and early-90's.  And you get the sense that history would count for quite a lot with this particular supergroup.

As for Kirk Hammett, well he's always been something of an 'along for the ride' kind of guy.  He's a good guitarist - if perhaps a little over-rated - but I can't see him providing the same amount creatively as some of the others.

Of course the other big question is when this would happen, if it did.  Megadeth have had a pretty gruelling touring and recording schedule of late, and no doubt will continue to tour on the back of forthcoming album TH1RT3EN (due 1.11.11).  There's been talk of a new Metallica album, and while their touring schedule has been a little less intensive, that's because of a band policy of ensuring they all get time with their families.

As good as it sounds on paper, getting the personalities and their respective schedules in alignment might be just a bit too much to ask, at least in the short-term future.  Oh well, we can always dream.

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