The whole "is Dave Mustaine still angry about being ousted from Metallica?" question feels so stale in recent years. Megadeth has seen an incredible amount of success in the past few decades, including winning a Grammy for Best Metal Performance in 2017 for their song "Dystopia," alongside major tours and tons of new music. Still, an interview with The Joe Rogan Experience, Mustaine was asked if he's bitter about being booted from Metallica.
"Not bitterness — I'm over it. It's just money," he said. "At the end of the day, my happiness and my family and my wife and my children are more important to me than anything in this world. I love our fans. I have so many things in this life that I'm happy about. But, man, it's my family. And obviously my relationship with God. I take that very, very personal. And I don't talk to people about it; I don't push it on 'em at all. It's my thing. And I just look at it like where I'm at right now… Yeah, [I was] 20 in Metallica, and now, look at me, I'm 60 in Megadeth. And I'm a Grammy winner. I'm a New York Times best-selling author — all these things."
Mustaine does mention that he specifically asked Metallica not to use his music after he left, which they did. Mustaine has of course received writing credits on both Kill 'Em All and Ride The Lightning, but didn't for anything on Master Of Puppets despite claims that his writing is featured on the album.
"The thing that bothered me the most was I had all my music, and I left it behind and I said, 'Don't use my music.' And of course they did. They used it on the first record, on the second record. There's parts of my music on a song on the third record. All the solos on the first record are mine, except that they're just performed by Kirk [Hammett]. And [they're] close but not the same. And he's not a bad guitar player."
Mustaine also claims that Kirk got royalties for his writing, saying that the band has to know he wasn't being paid for his contributions. "Well, most of 'em, yeah, but Kirk got my royalties for 'Metal Militia' for many, many years. And he has to see the check, so I know somebody saw that I wasn't getting paid."