In a couple of weeks, Megadeth will return to Greece for a unique show in Athens. Rock Overdose and Zisis Petkanas had the chance to talk with the guitarist Chris Broderick. You can read the interview below.
Rockoverdose.gr: Hi, Chris! Welcome to Rockoverdose.gr. How are you these days?
Chris Broderick: I'm very good, thank you. Getting ready to play a show with Rob Zombie and Volbeat.
Rockoverdose.gr: It's been several months after the release of TH1RT3EN. How do the fans see this release, and how do you feel about it?
Chris: I don't really look at reviews that are placed online too much, or anything like that. Once you release the CD, I feel that it's in the hands of the fans themselves, so whether they like it or hate it, it's out of my control at that moment. But, what I can tell you is from playing the songs live, songs like "Public Enemy" and "Whose Life" are definitely going over real strong live.
Rockoverdose.gr: I think it's one of your greatest releases, in my opinion.
Chris: Thank you.
Rockoverdose.gr: Does the re-approach to your thrash sound have to do with the Big Four tour?
Chris: No, not so much. We're going into the studio with a new producer, Johnny K, and we're really kind of getting a little of time to experiment with different sounds and different tones, see how they're going to come out. That was the awesome thing about making Thirteen, but it was definitely a little bit more involved with just the idea of how the overall music was going to be portrayed. We wanted it to sound as big as possible, and a little bit more raw than previous CDs.
Rockoverdose.gr: So the Big Four tour is probably the most historic tour in all the metal scene. Do you agree with that?
Chris: Yeah, I could think so just because I was a part of it, but it was every big and it was such an honor to be able to play with the other bands, Metallica Slayer and Anthrax, it's just like we were all trying to really re-invent the idea of thrash in the minds of the fans.
Rockoverdose.gr: It was a great idea, and all the fans really enjoyed it.
Chris: Yeah, I had a really great time too.
Rockoverdose.gr: It seems that people turned back to that cold thrash period of the late '80s. Do you agree, and why do you think this is happening?
Chris: I can make some guesses; honestly, I think it has a little bit to do with games like Guitar Hero, and stuff like that, that has made it resurgent in that kind of way, with guitar music that was so popular. I think also that music of today is being pigeonholed into certain genres, like contemporary metal today. It's really starting to come out with a certain style in metal today, they get their own little friendly name, whatever it's called. Then they're pigeonholed in that style, and metal in the late '80s wasn't like that. You were a little bit more free to experiment and try to come out with new ideas.
Rockoverdose.gr: We hear a lot of old bands returning to their old, classic sound. I think this is good for their loyal fans.
Rockoverdose.gr: What's your opinion on bands changing their sound or music direction a lot in a few of their albums? Is it okay with the fans?
Rockoverdose.gr: Any band, like Paradise Lost did with their album, Metallica with "Lulu". Megadeth did with "Risk".
Chris: You're asking about bands that mutate those riffs, and you're asking how are they perceived? When you look at a CD like "Lulu," it's something off the beaten path for Metallica. So I don't know if the fans should consider that a full-fledged Metallica release. It's something they've been trying, something that they've experimented with. I know a lot of fans couldn't dig it that much, but it's definitely unique, and I commend them at least, for trying something new and different that they wanted to do. As far the CD "Risk" goes, it was a little bit of a turn as well, maybe not quite as drastic, but I still talk to fans, and they're like, "Oh yeah, my favorite CD was Risk!", so you never know who you're going to please and who you're not going to please, so at the end of the day, it's really in the fans' hands, and whether they like it or not.
Rockoverdose.gr: You're right. I have the feeling that the current band lineup is identical to that of 1990-1994, which is considered the Golden Era of Megadeth. Do you feel that as well?
Chris: From a fan's perspective of Megadeth, that was definitely my favorite lineup listening to Megadeth. Then, I don't like to see it as a golden lineup, because when you listen back to all of the different Megadeth CDs, there are really some unique things you get from each of the different lineups, whether it was with Chris Poland and that really unique, kind of jazzy sound we had, or Marty that had the more kind of exotic-sounding influence. Even Glen Drover with that really great vibrato and smooth tones. I look at the good side of things.
Rockoverdose.gr: You have announced that you will give selected shows in South America, and that you will play the entire "Countdown to Extinction" album. How do you feel about this, and what do you think of this album, as you weren't part of it when it was released?
Chris: I do believe it was one of their biggest CDs, when they released it. I kind of like the idea of doing album anniversaries, because they kind of bring you back to that time. you listen to a whole CD, that's what was thinking at that time. When you just listen to random songs by that band, you're getting how they've grown and matured; you're getting a different cut throughout time of how they've grown. So I kind of like it that we'll play this one CD in a way, because it kind of brings you back to that time.
Rockoverdose.gr: It's really great. Could you tell Dave Mustaine to do the same in Athens? To play "Countdown to Extinction" during your show here in Greece! It would be great to do it.
Chris: I'll let him know.
Rockoverdose.gr: And the Rockoverdose team will bake a birthday cake for you! What are we going to hear during your show here in Greece?
Chris: I would think we're going to be playing a lot of songs off of Thirteen, so we can let the fans hear those live, then of course we're going to be playing the songs that you can't afford not to play them, like "Holy Wars" and "Symphony of Destruction", and other songs like that. There's always interesting little songs that we could throw in just randomly, just because we think the fans will really like them.
Rockoverdose.gr: That's great, we'll really enjoy it. Will the Countdown to Extinction Tour come out on DVD, maybe?
Chris: I don't know, we haven't talked about that, I don't know of any plans about a DVD.
Rockoverdose.gr: I think it would be a good idea. When this tour is over, are there any plans for any new material, a new album?
Chris: Yeah, we're starting to talk about coming up with new material for the next CD and I'm sure we're going to start working hard on that in the next few months.
Rockoverdose.gr: I suppose you already have some ideas.
Chris: Yeah, definitely. We'll all start getting together and compiling them, once we get some down time.
Rockoverdose.gr: Is there anything important you'd like to announce to the Greek people and to the audience that will listen to this interview?
Chris: I just want to tell them, thanks for all the support, and I can't wait to get back to Greece this year. It's one of my favorite places, so I hope we will see them soon!
Rockoverdose.gr: So we're waiting for June 20th to come! Do you know about your support bands in Greece?
Chris: No, I don't know which ones are going to be playing.
Rockoverdose.gr: It's going to be Kvelertak.
Chris: I've never heard of them, really.
Rockoverdose.gr: Which classic Megadeth songs do you enjoy playing on stage the most?
Chris: Probably "Tornado of Souls," maybe "Hangar 18".
Rockoverdose.gr: A final question: what's your opinion on combining religion with music?
Chris: I think that's up to the individual. They're always going to gain or lose some audience depending on what you decide to do. I think, being an artist, you have to make that call yourself, the individual. Everybody has beliefs, and as an artist, you have to adhere to them.
Rockoverdose.gr: Do you think that metal music has to do with any religion, or is it something independent?
Chris: It can be either, again, it's dependent on the artist. If there's an artist that has religious content in the lyrics, most likely they're going to get fans that have the same mindset. If you have metal bands that don't write lyrics or sing about religious content, they're going to get fans that won't want that either way.
Rockoverdose.gr: Chris, which is your last message to the Greek people?
Chris: Thanks again! I will see you guys soon.
Rockoverdose.gr: Thank you very much.
Questions: Petropoulos Panagiotis
Transcription: Vicky Denaxa