Dave Mustaine has a message to Megadeth fans: drugs are not cool, and make you do terrible things. That's what he told Metal Hammer in a recent interview about his new book, Rust In Peace: The Story of the Megadeth Masterpiece. The story notes that heroin is mentioned 62 times in the book.
But there is nothing glamorous about doing heroin according to Dave Mustaine. Hammer notes the book reveals the band had to cancel their 1988 stadium tour with Iron Maiden because Ellefson was too dopesick to tour. We learned that Mustaine missed "almost half" of the recording sessions for the legendary album, because he was detoxing. But when Mustaine was asked about those passages, he wanted to make it clear that they were a disclaimer.
At one point in the book, David Ellefson describes Rust In Peace as “a masterpiece created in the darkness of heroin.” How crucial to making the album was getting high? Did you need to do one to do the other?
That's a really good question. I think it's putting a little too much merit on the euphoria from the drugs, because they had worn off long after we'd started (the album). It's like the old saying – first the man takes a drink, then the drink takes a drink, then the drink takes the man. The sad thing was, I was so out in the open with my debauchery and the fact that if you didn't like it, I would fight you. That didn't end up very good for me in Metallica, but that's how I was. It was just a way of life. We were street urchins, and nobody told me what to do – not now, not ever. As I started to get healthier, I started to realize that I could play guitar (sober), and there's a lot more to life than smuggling stuff and trying to always have something on you.
To your credit, the book paints the throes of addiction bluntly, and not with a colored lens.
If you're talking about drugs, you're going to need a specimen who's had experience with said substance and the cerebral aftermath, if you will. That's who you're talking to. Drugs make the guy cheat on his wife, make the wife cheat on her husband, make young kids suck dicks in an alleyway to get their fix. It's just crazy. Why would I want to glorify something like that?