MEGADETH's new album, "The Sick, The Dying And The Dead" is tentatively due in the spring of 2022.
MEGADETH leader Dave Mustaine revealed the timeline for the upcoming LP's release in an interview with American Songwriter magazine. In the chat, which also covers Mustaine's battle with cancer and his recent endorsement deal with Gibson, the 60-year-old musician said the "The Sick, The Dying And The Dead" title track is about the plague, but not solely centered around the current pandemic. A broader, more historical scope of the diseases that have plagued humankind throughout time, "The Sick The Dying And The Dead" covers the current virus, swine flu, and other epidemics from centuries past.
"The song itself was a historical journey of how the plague started and where it went, starting with rats on ships carrying the disease, coming ashore in Sicily," Mustaine said.
According to Mustaine, the music for "The Sick, The Dying And The Dead" was assembled from riffs and music he has had archived for years, some as far back as his teens. "A lot of the riffs have been saved over time," he said. "A brand new song can be made up of something I wrote when I was 15 or 55. If It's a good riff, I'll save it."
Mustaine added that guitarist Kiko Loureiro and drummer Dirk Verbeuren were both involved in piecing together the songs on the album, which was recorded mostly in Nashville, with Loureiro working on his parts from his home in Finland.
Mustaine has yet to reveal who played bass on the new MEGADETH album after David Ellefson's tracks were removed from the LP following his dismissal from the band in late May.
Ellefson laid down his bass tracks on MEGADETH's sixteenth LP in May 2020 at a studio in Nashville, Tennessee.
In July, Mustaine announced during an episode of his Gimme Radio program "The Dave Mustaine Show" that Ellefson's bass tracks would not be used on the new MEGADETH LP.
In early May, on the same day that sexually tinged messages and explicit video footage involving Ellefson were posted on Twitter, he released a statement on Instagram denying all social media chatter that he "groomed" an underage fan. He also filed a report with the police department in Scottsdale, Arizona alleging unlawful distribution of sexually explicit images of Ellefson by unknown offenders. In the report, Ellefson admitted that he had been exchanging sexual text messages with a Dutch teenager, who captured a video of several of their virtual "masturbating encounters" without his consent and shared them with friends. (According to Ellefson, the woman was 19 at the time of their first virtual sexual encounter.) The 56-year-old Ellefson, who lives in Scottsdale, first became aware of the video on May 9, when the claim "David Ellefson of MEGADETH is a pedophile" appeared on Instagram. Ellefson told police he was notified on May 14 by MEGADETH that the band would be parting ways with him. Three days later, he was fired.
MEGADETH recently completed "The Metal Tour Of The Year" with LAMB OF GOD, TRIVIUM and HATEBREED.
Ellefson was in MEGADETH from the band's inception in 1983 to 2002, and again from 2010 until his latest departure.