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  • Hi Scorpion. I guess this qeustion is about both Dave's and Chris's amp set-up. I have been reading up on the Axe-Fx II unit. I always thought it was played directly through their Marshall amps, but from what I understand, this can't or shouldn't be done. So how do impliment these units in the bands set-up? What's the signal path?

    Thank you

    Lu-Jean Wickens


    Hey Lu-Jean,

    The signal starting from the guitar runs as such: guitar to the rear input of the
    Fractal, the signal is then split into an out that runs to a Marshall mono block power amp and out to the guitar speakers. The other out of the fractal has a speaker simulation on it and runs strait to the P.A. From there the sound engineer takes the signals and combines them in an amount he thinks is appropriate. This is a fairly typical use of the Fractal and is not detrimental in any way.

    Hope this gives some clarity on Megadeth's setup.


  • I purchased a United Abominations "Tour Edition" CD on eBay which includes 3 bonus tracks, "Out On The Tiles", "Black Swan", and "The Bodies Left Behind". It's sealed, it has a sticker on the front stating "tour editon", it looks legitimate. Is it the real deal or is it a counterfeit? I don't know if this helps but the barcode is 016861802929 and the product # on the spine of the cd is SC07334-0 LTD. I can provide pics also. I haven't found any information about in online anywhere. When I search for it on google, all that comes up is the eBay listing. Any information would be appreciated. Thanks. Brad


    Brad, it's common for bootlegs to have a U.S. or U.K. UPC code with a foreign catalog number and a counterfeit CD with all kinds of extras on them. We know the only edition of United Abominations you could buy on that tour was the regular CD at meet 'n greets with Megadeth, and Black Swan/Bodies have never been released on CD before the Endgame & TH1RT3EN albums.


  • Hi, Scorpion and Megadeth! -I'm from Argentina, so I don't speak english very well, but I'll try anyway ;) - I direct my question to David Ellefson:
    I've seen photos and videos where David Ellefson was playing a 5 string bass Rust In Peace... but the 5th string is not necessary to play those songs -I think-, so... Why does David play a 5 string bass in RIP?

    Greetings from Buenos Aires


    Hi Facundo,

    While many of the earlier Megadeth songs don't require a five string bass, many of the later songs do, beginning with 'Hangar 18' on the "Rust In Peace" album. 'Hangar 18' was the first such song David needed to replicate a five string bass line for and then the five string started becoming a bigger part of his bass composition style after that. I can tell you, David finds it easier to play a five string most of the night rather than always be changing basses, which is why he plays it so much during Megadeth's live shows.


  • Hello Scorpion, I have a question for the webmaster here at

    When can we expect the current Endgame theme (which was done very well, I must say) to be replaced with a shiny, new TH1RT3EN theme?

    Thank you for taking the time to read this!
    -Ali from Michigan


    Hello Ali, the webmaster appreciates your comment in regards to the Endgame theme. As you may already be aware, the website gets a make over with every new studio release by Megadeth. A new shiny, TH1RT3EN theme is set to be unveiled when the new album is released on November 1, 2011. Stay tuned for a new great look and some rad updated features!


  • Hey Scorpion,

    I was wondering why Dave and Chris choose not to use effect pedal and have pedal boards onstage? Do all the distortions, choruses, flangers etc come from the effects processors and amps? And does David Ellefson use any sort of effects or does he plug straight into his amp?

    Thank you very much,
    Eduardo, São Paulo, Brazil

    PS. I'm extremely excited to see Megadeth play at SWU here in Brazil in November!


    Hey Eduardo,

    The band prefers a clean stage which is why they also use in-ear monitoring instead of foldback wedge monitor cabinets. This way they can offer their audience a perfect view from any seat and not be tied to pedal boards to hinder their performance for the fans.

    David Ellefson only uses a stereo chorus for songs like 'Dawn Patrol', 'Poison Was The Cure' and 'Five Magics'. That pedal is run by his tech offstage as well.


  • Hi Scorpion, I've a question for Chris Broderick.

    Chris, I know that you endorse engl powerball amps, while using Marshall pre amps and speakers live in Megadeth. But you also use fractal audio axe fx ii systems and the amp models and patches which come with it. How do you find the comparison between tones on the fractal with the engl amp you endorse, and what is your stance on the Digital fx versus valve amps. Also is an amp required (like any engl or Marshall head) when you have an axe fx powered by say a Marshall power amp.

    Any response to this would be great,
    Owen Catterall, Ireland


    Hey Owen,

    I would first state that this question has been out there for a long time now, however it is only now becoming relevant because until Fractal came around there was no comparison to the original. I would say that tube amps and Fractal Axe's compare favorably to each other, but when you throw in the convenience of all that the Fractal can do, it makes it the better choice for touring. I will always have my favorite amps around however, to make sure that I haven't strayed to far from their tone because with all of the tonal possibilities in the Axe Fx it's not hard to go over board Ahahahha.

    Take care, Chris.

  • I know that there has been asked a bass question recently, but I really have to know the answer.

    I play bass, and it's really frustrating when I cover Poison Was The Cure with my bass sounding too clean. How does David Ellfefon gets that Slap-pop sound, while using a pick?

    Thank you.


    David Ellefson does use a pick and has a very clean sound, but he now adds bass chorus pedal to help the intro for 'Poison Was The Cure' have a bit more of a colorful sound. He turns the pedal off once he is into the song with the full band.


  • I play the bass guitar and Dave Ellefson is a huge influence for me

    My question is this:

    How did he become so good? I mean i know practice means everything but come on!

    I dont have a whole lot of time for practice anymore since i am going to school now, but basically is there any quick tips for a novice bass player?

    BTW, i met the guys at the Joe Louis Arena in August of 2010 on the RIP anniversary tour, it was so Awesome and you guys should play in Michigan more often there are huge fans out here too!!!



    Hi Kevin,

    My rule is "practice" at home so you can "rehearse" with your band to make you good enough to "perform" live!

    Stay sharp with your scales and basic musicality. Stay up on any songs you like to play, too. It's better to play 15-30 minutes each day than to try and save up for four hours on a Saturday. A little all the time keeps your chops much sharper.

    David Ellefson

  • This one's for Dave. You helped usher in the era of the music video.
    With all the advancements in CGI and production, if you could go back and remake one of your older videos and tell the story with today's technology, which would it be? Also, is there a song you wish you did a video for but didn't?

    Keep crushing it! Megadeth has set the bar for the rest of the metal world.

    Blythewood, SC


    Hi Glenn, good question! I went to Dave Mustaine with this and here is what he had to say...

    When we did Hangar 18 we used miniatures and some special fx too. I think that videos today are all about the pardoo! And if the band ain't a pardy band, then they are singing in a cemetery somewhere. There really is no more middle ground. Thanks for your question. Megaman

  • Hi there Scorpion.

    I am a drummer myself and I LOVE to try and play Megadeth's songs, as they are tremendously challenging for me. And I say try, because the drumming in Megadeth is quite complex... the tempos, the rudiments... they are fu**ing amazing. My question is... who writes and arranges the drum sections for every song ? Is this a task that Dave does, or this relies completely on every drummer ? Do the drummers give suggestions, do they create, or does Dave say "play this the way I say, and that's it" ?

    Greetings to all the band, they are the best in the world. Seriously.


    San José, Costa Rica.


    Hi there Christopher, here is Shawn Drover's answer to your question...

    Most megadeth songs I have recorded are a collaboration between myself, Dave and the producer. I will play the track, then we will listen to it and have bounce ideas around before I record the final track. I like to have their opinions, as sometimes a part can get even better with just a small change in a drum fill, etc.

    Be well,

  • Hi Scorpion,

    How long does the band usually rehearse for a tour? I notice on the website that, as of today, they are still working on the new record. I have tickets to see them with the Big Four on July 2nd here in Germany, and also to see them in Hamburg on July 4th. I would have thought that they would be rehearsing by now!!


    brian barker
    hamburg, germany

    Hi Brian,

    There are no set rehearsals before heading out on the road together. The guys tour so much and have done it for such a long time that they are all ready to go once out on the road. With that being said, they do play through a majority of the set togehter at least once in the dressing room each night before a show. That gets them primed and warmed up for the upcoming show. If there are new songs to be played, they will take this time to go through them and start introducing the new songs on stage as they get more comfortable with them. It all comes together pretty quick when you're pros like Megadeth! ...of course, each of the guys also do their own practicing and keeping up on their chops while off stage.

  • scorpion,

    How does willie gee achieve mustaines tone with a digitech gsp1101 or axe fx?

    New York City


    Hi Ezekiel, I caught up with Willie G today and this is what he had to say about your question...


    Well, if he is using WHICH unit we use, Dave has been using the Fractal Audio Systems Axe FX Ultra exclusively for almost a year now. Prior to that, we used the Digitech GSP1101 since about 2007.

    Dave's sound has alwasy been based around a Marshall or "Marshall type" amp (meaning a pretty high-gain tube head with EL34 power tubes) with maybe an overdrive pedal giving it a slight "push". To get Dave's tone with a preamp like the Axe FX, we use amplifier simulations that are based on amps like the Marshall JCM 800 or modded "Marshall types" like the "Marsha" amp, and add a touch of overdrive pedal (such as a TS808 or ProCo Rat overdrive, with the level dialed up a bit and the drive/distortion barely on), and a bit of boosting of midrange frequencies using parametric EQ. That's pretty much the whole key to it - getting a good, British-type amp sound, driving a bit harder at the input with a gain-boosting device, and tweaking the sound for a bit more "teeth" in the midrange with EQ. You could do it with graphic as well, but I've had better luck with parametric eq-ing.

    Same thing with the other units Dave's used ...just pick a good, high-gain amp type, add a touch of drive from "Tube Screamer" or whatever overdrive it has, and a bit of judicious midrange tweaking to accentuate the midrange (NEVER "scoop out" the mids!) and you should be in the ballpark! A lot of the punch in Dave's tone also comes from using a pretty hefty string gauge, tuned to standard, A440 tuning...Dave uses a light top/heavy bottom set, .010 to .052.

    Hope this helps!

  • Hi guys,

    I’ve been following Dave on Twitter, and I can see you’re recording a new album which is great! But Dave keeps referring to a guy named johnny? Is he sessioning guitar or does he have more of a production role? Also – Will the new album be featuring Vic on the cover?




    Hi Jim, Dave is referring to producer Johnny Karkazis. Better known as Johnny K,(born in Chicago, Illinois) he is a Grammy Award nominated producer/engineer/mixer/musician and songwriter. He owns Groovemaster Recording Studios in Chicago. Johnny has worked with bands such as Sevendust, Disturbed, 3 Doors Down, Finger Eleven, Staind, Machine Head and more.

    Johnny has been brought in to produce the new Megadeth album at Vic's Garage in San Marcos, California.

    Vic on cover? .... you'll have to wait to see! ;)

  • What scales do Mustaine and Broderick use when they solo? Some scales that are commonly used in metal sound more Egyptian when I use them. Also, what chromatic notes do they add in?



    Hi Miguel, I caught up with Chris Broderick today and asked him your question. Here is what he had to say in regards to the scales used in Megadeth.

    "One of the most common scales used in Megadeth (and in most bands) is the Pentatonic scale. In some cases we would add chromatic notes such as the b5, and #6 to add some variation to their tone. The scales you would refer to as sounding more Egyptian would be the Harmonic mi scale (especially if you play it off the 5th), and the Hungarian gypsy mi scale in tandem with a Maj7#11 arpeggio."

  • Scorpion, please will you tell me if there is a meet n greet for us fan club members at the big 4 in Indio??

    Member #5873

    Hi Sean, today we announced just that, here at You now have the chance to meet the guys at the Big 4 concert in Indio, California!

    Read below...

    The Megadeth Cyber Army is offering club members an opportunity to meet Megadeth at the "Big Four" show in Indio, California on April 23, 2011! If you plan on attending the show, check the club now and enter the draw for a meet 'n greet pass to meet Megadeth at Indio! 10 lucky winners will be chosen. Hurry, you must enter before midnight (PT), Monday, April 18. For more information, visit the Cyber Army. Not a member? Not a problem! Enlist today!

  • I play the bass guitar and Dave Ellefson is a huge influence for me

    My question is this:

    How did he become so good? I mean i know practice means everything but come on!

    I dont have a whole lot of time for practice anymore since i am going to school now, but basically is there any quick tips for a novice bass player?

    BTW, i met the guys at the Joe Louis Arena in August of 2010 on the RIP anniversary tour, it was so Awesome and

    you guys should play in Michigan more often there are huge fans out here too!!!


    Here it is directly from Mr. Ellefson!

    "I practiced a lot when I was younger and still do. For some people it is more natural than others but most importantly play for the fun of doing it. That's the main thing, have fun!

    I suggest trying to play at least a little bit very often rather than trying to find large chunks of time, as those times usually don't happen later in life with commitments of school, family, work, etc.

    Try and divide your practice up in three equal sections: play something you like (fav song), practice something challenging (scales, modes) and then ad lib and improvise a bit.

    That should help you have fun and still challenge yourself just enough to see some steady improvement.


    David Ellefson"

  • Hi there Scorpion!

    I have question about David's signature bass models. Will there be any budget-friendly model that costs ~700-900 $ or are the custom shop models be only ones on sale?
    If there are coming budjet-friendly models will they also arrive in Europe?

    - Tommi



    The first batch are USA Custom Shop but stay tuned to for more information on future bass plans.

    David Ellefson

  • Hey Scorpion,

    I went to see Megadeth on May 2nd last year here in Peru for the 20th anniversary of Rust In Peace, and they blew my mind. I was wondering if Dave and the guys are planning on making a 25th anniversary tour for Peace Sells.. But Who's Buying?.

    P.S: Thanks in advance for answering if you do!



    Hi Erik,

    Dave Mustaine recently told VH1 Radio Networks' Dave Basner, "We've already had people talk to us about doing that and I told our manager that I'm totally interested in doing 'Peace Sells' for a 25th anniversary this year but I don't want to do it all year like we did with 'Rust in Peace'. I want to do it towards the end of the year. So we'll do the whole year doing our thing and then come around October, where the end of the year is, you've got a quarter of the year left, October, November and December, where we can do the 'Peace Sells' thing."

  • Hi I have a question does dave mustaine use Fractal Axe FX Ultra and Digitech GSP1101 both at the same time or he just uses one, does he use one at the studio and the other one live or how does it work?



    Hi Sebastian, I went directly to Dave Mustaine's guitar tech, Willie Gee with your question. Here is what Willie had to say on the matter...

    Dave USED to use the Digitech GSP1101, but has been using the Fractal Axe FX Ultra exclusively live since about September of 2010. Before that, we used a combination of the Axe FX Ultra and the GSP1101, but never both at the same time.

    In the studio Dave usually uses Marshall JVM410 amplifiers, as well as other Marshall models, but depending on what is going on, any variety of gear can be put into use, from the Marshall amps to his preamps (including the Rocktron Prophesy) to the prototype of the Dave Mustaine Zoom G2.1DM pedal that's due out this spring.

  • Hey Scorpion,

    I was looking at Dave's signature VMNTs and I came across the double necked Bloodlust. Do the necks have 6 strings on each or is there 6 on one neck and 12 strings on the other neck?



    Hi Justin,

    Dave's double necks have a 12-string on the upper neck and a 6-string on the lower neck. The tuning pegs for the extra 6-strings on the upper neck are located at the bottom of the guitar, on the body. You can see in the photo of Dave's Blood Lust double neck right here.

    Check out Dave's brand new Classic Black double neck here.

  • Hi Scorpion,

    I have a question for Shawn. Do you find it easier to drum open-handed with a right-handed kit, rather than play cross-handed with a left-handed kit?



    Hi Ford, I went straight to the source on this one. Here is what Shawn had to say...

    I find it easier to play open handed. At 13 years old when I started out, I jumped on a buddy's drumkit which was a right handed kit-it felt comfortable playing open handed so I went with it.


  • Hi "Scorpion",

    On 11th April 2011 Megadeth & Slayer is coming to Poland (Lodz) during
    European Carnage Tour. I was wondering who will headline this gig.



    Hi Matthew,

    The 2011 European Carnage tour is a co-headline tour - Megadeth / Slayer (Slayer to close all shows except Paris).

  • Hi Scorpion

    I have a question and I'm wondering if you'll be able to answer it for me

    With the Australian dates ending last night, how many shows have Megadeth performed in total in 2010?



    Hi Wayne, Megadeth played a total of 117 shows in 2010.

    Check the Killing Road tour archive for 2010 here:

  • Hi Scorpion,

    I read on the website that Sudden Death is Megadeth's 9th Grammy nomination. Can you tell me what were the other 8?


    Megadeth's past nominations have all been in the "Best Metal Performance" category.
    Here is the list by year.

    1991- Rust In Peace album
    1992- Hangar 18
    1993- Countdown To Extinction album
    1994- Angry Again
    1995- 99 Ways To Die
    1996- Paranoid
    1998- Trust
    2010- Head Crusher

    2011- Sudden Death

  • Dear Scorpion,

    I just watched the DVD That One Night- Live In Buenos Aires (Fantastic concert by the way!!!!), and I'm curious about the song "Coming Home". Was it written specifically for that show or is it on a studio album, because I've looked for it on the website and I can't find it anywhere (Who knows, maybe I didn't look hard enough)?

    Thanks a bunch

    Lone Fan of BSU,


    Hi Cole,

    "Coming Home" appears as a bonus track on the Japanese release of "The World Needs A Hero" album (May 2001) and later appeared on the "Warchest" box set as a song previously unreleased in the US. The song was played on "That One Night: Live in Buenos Aires" with Dave Mustaine on vocals and Glen Drover on acoustic guitar. Dave changed the lyric "I'm coming home to Arizona" by replacing "Arizona" to "Argentina", the song is listed on the CD as "Coming Home to Argentina".

  • Hello Scorpion!

    I finally attended my first Megadeth show this past month. It was the BEST concert that I've ever been to and I've been to a lot of concerts. How I wish I would have made it to the other show in my area back in March, before it was sold out (as well as many shows over the years). Anyhow, I was wondering if Dave is going to do another book signing and if so, if Northeastern PA would be one of the places that he would consider visiting for it.

    Thanks for the input.



    Hi Diane, a new paperback version of Dave Mustaine's autobiograhy "Mustaine: A Heavy Metal Memoir" is currently in the works. With its release and another Megadeth tour on the go perhaps in the new year, Dave would definitely consider adding another book signing tour to the mix. Stay tuned for details!

  • Hi Scorpion,

    I think Sudden Death is an awesome song, and I was wondering if this has been released as a CD single in any country.
    I have every CD single released so far from Megadeth, and I would love to add this one to my collection if it exists.

    Thanks Scorpion

    -Chris / San Jose, CA


    Hi Chris, the song "Sudden Death" was written by Dave Mustaine exclusively for the "Guitar Hero: Warriors Of Rock" video game. The song has not been released as a CD single in any country but you can currently stream the song at Roadrunner Records or download from iTunes

  • Hey there. My mind was just blown by Megadeth's new song, Sudden Death. Any way you could share the lyrics with us? Dave's singing on this song and in Endgame btw, is freakin' awesome. Reminds me of older classics like Holy Wars, the Punishment Due. These are the new classics!




    Sudden Death

    His evil Highness, born from disaster
    To dominate and to kill
    A glistening, murder-machine
    False majesty, standing perfectly still

    A blitzkrieg raining down evil
    On a mountain of black ice
    Like a good ole fashioned beating within
    Inches of your life

    While alone and left abandoned
    With the sentence you've been handed
    All your angels will ignore you
    As your life flashes before you

    Even still you keep on fighting
    Through the thunder and the lighting
    And now Heaven sends its love
    Your sudden death from above

    Once frozen like a prisoner depraved
    Perched high atop the lithospheres
    Set free from beneath the depths of hell
    Bequeathing man nothing but despair

    The beast is genetically programmed
    Time to destroy, time to go berserk
    To see the end of all war
    To see the end of the Earth

    Stopping at nothing, punch-drunk
    From the blood that he's tasted
    Tearing your soul apart
    Not one bit of your pain will be wasted

    Now death descends upon you
    Like a bloody white dove
    Bringing your retribution
    Your sudden death from above

    While alone and left abandoned
    With the sentence you've been handed
    All your angels will ignore you
    As your life flashes before you

    Even still you keep on fighting
    Through the thunder and the lighting
    And now Heaven sends its love
    Your sudden death from above

    Music & Lyrics - Mustaine

  • Has Vic Rattlehead ever been on stage before at a Megadeth show besides his debut the other night in Ohio? Was that the first time he's ever appeared onstage with the band?




    Hi Jeff,

    Vic also appeared onstage during the original Rust In Peace tour, on the Japanese leg of the Oxidation Of The Nations world tour in 1991. Check out this pic from the Gallery!

  • I've got a question for Chris. I've seen an interview in which he states that when he was a teenager he used to wake up really early in the morning and then would proceed to practice almost all day long not only guitar but violin and piano, too. My question for him is, "How did he discipline himself in order to rise up early and put in so many hours of practice, day after day?" and also, How long did he manage to do that for?. I hope you/he can answer this for me. Cheers to all the band members.

    Megadeth...Megadeth, aguante Megadeth!

    Maru, Uruguay.


    Hey Maru,

    As far as discipline, I have always loved playing music, however even that was a bit grueling at times. I simply knew what I needed to accomplish on those instruments and decided that it would take 14 hours a day to improve on them.

    I did this during the summers in between my high school years, and my family never appreciated me playing the piano at 5 in the morning ahhahahaha. This of course meant I had no social life.

    I did that consistently for two summers and part of a third, I remember however that the fatigue would build up and I would end up falling off my schedule every few days and not getting in the full 14. I can say that while it did help me technically I'm not so sure about musically.

    Chris Broderick