In a new interview with Metal Hammer, Dave Mustaine opens up about the dismissal of long-time Megadeth bassist, David Ellefson. Ellefson was fired from Megadeth back in May 2021 after a highly-publicized sexual affair and was removed from the band's upcoming album The Sick, The Dying… And The Dead!. Megadeth recently welcomed James LoMenzo as their permanent new bassist, though The Sick, The Dying… And The Dead! features bass playing by Steve Di Giorgio of Testament.
“I have made mistakes myself and so I know what it feels like to have people gunning for you," said Mustaine. "But what we had to remember is that Megadeth has a lot of moving parts to it. There are four band members, you’ve got their families, their management companies, the agencies, all of their technicians and on and on and on.
"Let me just say this – it was a hard decision that had to be made. There were a lot of people involved and I had to make a decision, because unfortunately, when you’re the leader, you’re the one that has to suck it up and face the music.
"All I wanted to do was make a clean break, and not hurt anyone, not hurt the fans and not hurt him. I just wanted to move on, and I hope the gentleman concerned is doing okay. I imagine there was some adjustment that had to take place when it happened… But I’ve forgiven him before when he sued me [in 2004, claiming unpaid royalties] and I’ll forgive him a thousand times. I just won’t play music with him anymore."
Megadeth released their new single "We'll Be Back" on Friday alongside the official announcement of their new record The Sick, The Dying… And The Dead! on September 2. The song is sure to please any old-school fan with its blinding guitar work and relentless heaviness, or at least incite some serious headbanging with a breakdown toward the middle that has a killer gallop riff. Pre-orders for The Sick, The Dying… And The Dead! are available here.