Dave Mustaine Reveals Problem With Pearl Jam


Dave Mustaine recently blamed bands like Nirvana for messing things up in the early ’90s. He added that Megadeth always stayed true to its core sound despite the fact that many metal bands changed their image and style in that period because of grunge.

The hair metal bands weren’t the only ones that got sidelined by the worldwide explosion of the Seattle scene, spearheaded by the monumental success of Nirvana’s “Nevermind”.

Almost miraculously, however, that was also the time that two of thrash’s heaviest hitters – Metallica and Megadeth – released some of their most famous works in the form of “The Black Album” (1991) and “Countdown to Extinction” (1992), respectively. Speaking to Guitar World in a recent interview, Dave Mustaine reflected on what many consider the quintessential Megadeth album:

“It was our biggest record. That’s pretty much the way I measure it. A lot of it was because of the timing; it came out in ’92, and ’92 was when everything was imploding because of alternative music. You had Pearl Jam, Nirvana, Soundgarden, Mother Love Bone and Blind Melon fucking things up, and radio gravitated toward that.

“They thought the yuppies would listen to alternative music while drinking their Stella Artois. [Laughs] The types who don’t drink Miller High Life and definitely don’t listen to metal. And the advertisers who handled brands like Lexus, BMW and shit like that would advertise on alternative stations, which fucked metal.

“So, as these metal stations went the way of the great white buffalo, we had to decide, ‘Are we going to be alternative? Are we going to change like every other band?’ Metallica cut their hair off, put makeup on and all that stuff, and I got little haircuts during that time, but I never chopped it off. We decided we wouldn’t change to fit the trend and would tough it out.

“Sure, we made some minor changes at the behest of the record label, but that was as far as it went. The fact that Countdown succeeded despite the shifts in popular music showed that the music was more potent than any trend.

“We didn’t sell out like other bands. We didn’t change who we were. I think that’s the greatest measure of Countdown’s importance.”