MEGADETH's KIKO LOUREIRO Says He Has 'A Great Relationship' With DAVE MUSTAINE

October 5, 2022

In a new interview with Anne Erickson of Audio Ink Radio, Brazilian-born guitarist Kiko Loureiro, who joined MEGADETH in 2015, spoke about his relationship with the band's leader and founder, Dave Mustaine. Kiko said: "I think there's an understanding. The way I see it is I always try to work for the best of the band, because Dave is MEGADETH. Dave, that's his thing, his passion. Everything he did in his career, his life was always all about MEGADETH. So, for me, that I'm here for seven years, if I dedicate myself to do the best for MEGADETH, then I know I get the respect from Dave, and then we can get along really well, because I'm also caring about his baby. So I'm doing my best to have a great result with MEGADETH on stage, on the albums, promoting the band, so with that, you create a great environment of great communication, a healthy environment, a safe place to discuss ideas. Because in the end, we're discussing ideas. Even if I disagree with Dave, I feel comfortable to come to him and disagree with him, because you don't see people doing this much; people sometimes are afraid of him. But actually I feel that he likes that, that you come with a thoughtful disagreement to the benefit of the band. So I don't have any problems with him; I just have a great relationship with him."

Asked if he thinks MEGADETH has more albums of music left in it, Kiko said: "Yeah. I think this record [the band's latest album, 'The Sick, The Dying… And The Dead!'] shows that MEGADETH is alive and creative and powerful. That's one of the most common comments that I hear and read, is like, 'Wow. The band is still putting out great music, aggressive, fast, energetic.' We're not only going back and playing the old songs forever. [We're] showing that there's a lot of energy, creative energy. So, I believe that we can keep doing this for a long time. Some other bands, they don't do that — they just keep playing old songs forever. So, I think this album is here to prove that, and then the response, with the sales and numbers and social media, shows that people get excited to see good new material from legendary bands."

In an October 2015 interview with The Irish Sun, Mustaine was full of praise for Loureiro, saying: "A lot of times guitarists won't know how to add to something — they'll put something in there that's kind of like tits on a bull, unnecessary. Kiko came in and immediately started making some really good suggestions that we applied [to 'Dystopia']. When he first came in, I knew he had the ability but I didn't know if the songwriting technique and talent was going to show up this early on."

He continued: "What was great about the suggestions that Kiko made was that they weren't just guitar ones — he made a bass part in a song called 'Me Hate You' [that made it] really come along. In fact, that was one of the songs where he made a huge melodic contribution in the chorus and I said, 'Man, this sounds like something.'"

According to Dave, Kiko possesses all the elements that are required to become part of a legendary metal act like MEGADETH.

"For me — really simply stated — if you want to be a musician, that's one thing. If you want to be a rock star, that's another," Mustaine said. "But if you want to be legendary, you need to have three very important components: you need to have ability, you need to have appearance, and you need to have attitude. Without all three of those things, it's kind of like trying to have a three-legged milk stool without three legs — it's just not going to work."

He continued: "I found with Kiko, his ability was astronomical, with his attitude he was very confident in what he did — there's a difference between confidence and arrogance. In appearance, he was very classy and very subdued on the street, but up on stage he totally takes command of his performance. When he came up to Nashville to visit with me, I didn't even have him play for the majority of the day he was there. I just wanted to hang out with him and it's been a really long time since I hung out with a guitar player before I hired him. Usually I would listen to how he played and then I'd go, 'Okay, we'll work it out.' I didn't want to do that again. Hanging out with Kiko, and having lunch and kicking back and talking music was all I needed — I knew he was the right guy."

"The Sick, The Dying... And The Dead!" sold 48,000 equivalent album units in the U.S. in its first week of release to land at position No. 3 on the Billboard 200 chart. It marked MEGADETH's eighth top 10-charting album. Of "The Sick, The Dying... And The Dead!"'s 48,000 units earned for the week, album sales comprise 45,000, SEA units comprise 3,000 and TEA units comprise a negligible sum.

MEGADETH's previous top 10 entries on the Billboard 200 were "Countdown to Extinction" (No. 2, 1992),"Youthanasia" (No. 4, 1994),"Cryptic Writings" (No. 10, 1997),"United Abominations" (No. 8, 2007),"Endgame" (No. 9, 2009),"Super Collider" (No. 6, 2013) and "Dystopia" (No. 3, 2016).

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