Megadeth frontman Dave Mustaine was the latest guest of The Joe Rogan Experience podcast to discuss the band’s forthcoming album, The Sick, The Dying…And The Dead!, his influences growing up, and more.
“We have a song on the new record about Chernobyl, called ‘The Dogs of Chernobyl.’ It’s about when people got the evacuation notice…The song is, believe it or not, a love song, it talks about abandonment,” Mustaine says. “The person realizes that the person they love left them behind without a peep. They’re like a dog of Chernobyl. Imagine what it must have been like to be the pet and be completely abandoned. He adds, “I use a lot of weird metaphors.”
Mustaine also discusses the title track, saying, “People think it’s about the pandemic. When it happened I was going through my cancer treatment. I just wanted to get one foot in front of the other, get to the studio, and do my job. The lyrics came together several years ago. I was watching Frankenstein,” he explains, reflecting on the reanimation of Frankenstein as the genesis for the song.
Speaking about the music he heard growing up, Mustaine explained, “When I was 13 I had a very limited musical library, my sisters listened to a lot of Motown, my brother in law listened to a lot of pop stuff that was big in America at the time, Frank Valli, Paul Revere and the Raiders and stuff (this is just when I was a little kid), all those old bands.
“It wasn’t until my youngest sister (who’s a little bit older than me) started dating this guy, where I got exposed to harder music. And that started with Deep Purple, Mott The Hoople, some David Bowie and we discovered KISS and Ted Nugent and Led Zeppelin. Those three, that made all the difference in the world for me, with the guitar.”
Mustaine also discussed the influence of The Beatles, saying, “The Beatles were another huge band for me, with my songwriting because of the weird chord structures.” Mustaine also looked to Cat Stevens/Yusef Islam for vocal inspiration, adding, “He had a beautiful voice…that’s for sure.”
In other Mustaine news, it was recently announced that he is set to return to to Gimme Metal–the world’s only 24/7, all-metal streaming radio station–as DJ and host of his hugely popular “The Dave Mustaine Show.” His next episode is set to air at 12:00 p.m. PT / 3:00 p.m. ET on Thursday, August 25, with a new show to air at that time each Thursday to follow.