Chris Adler: ‘People Like To Pick On Dave Mustaine Because It’s Easy To Pick On The King’


LAMB OF GOD and MEGADETH drummer Chris Adler was interviewed on recent episode of VH1 Classic “That Metal Show” co-host Eddie Trunk‘s podcast, “Eddie Trunk Podcast”. Entire chat can be heard here. A few excerpts follow (transcribed by

On what he thought about the last couple of MEGADETH albums and how that affected his involvement in the making of MEGADETH‘s forthcoming fifteenth album, “Dystopia”:

“They were not my favorite MEGADETH records, but I think it’s great that that band has been able to do those things — whatever they wanted to do — and not try to please everybody, and it’s not gonna be the same every single time. Just even creatively, within LAMB OF GOD, doing this song that we have, ‘Overlord’, it’s nice to be able to just, once in a while, stretch out and do something people might not expect or just indulge your creative path in a different way. So I think it’s cool that [MEGADETH leader Dave Mustaine] did that. But, yeah, it was super intimidating for me to come in and do that, because this guy’s my hero. Now, the big thing was none of the material was stinker stuff. I mean, the guy is writing amazing stuff just all day long; in his sleep he’s writing better riffs than… well, the whole world. So there was never a time where I came in and said, ‘I really don’t like this. This sucks,’ or something like that. It was just more like, ‘Well, what do you think about speeding it up? What do you think about making this part a little bit shorter, making this part a little bit longer?’ And I felt like it was important for me to do that, because he could have hired anybody to come in there and just do what they were told. And I felt like the reason that he did call me, and maybe that the reason there were no other auditions, is because he didn’t want me to come in there and just say, ‘Yes, yes, yes.’ I felt like it was important for me to try and contribute. And when it became obvious that he was open to it, I was thrilled to be now in the process and not just be a hired guy.”

On some MEGADETH fans’ desire to see the band make an all-out thrash album and how “Dystopia” fits into that:

“Well, I am a MEGADETH fan, and that’s exactly what I want as well. And now I’m in MEGADETH, and I seem to have the ear of the creator. So, I feel like it’s absolutely the best that MEGADETH can be right now at putting out a thrash metal record. And that is not in any way… I’m not trying to step back from that idea, but 1990 is never gonna happen again; it’s just not gonna happen. You can’t write ‘Peace Sells Part 2’, LAMB OF GOD couldn’t write ‘New American Gospel Part 2’. People move on from those times, including the listeners. Everybody wants the album you did two albums ago, and that’s just always the way it’s gonna be for every band. So I think Dave was on the same page as me, which was: ‘Now is the time to really speed things up. Let’s get thrashy.’ And I think that’s why he called me, and I pushed for that the whole time. And I didn’t have to push hard; it was already there. The material is insane.”

On whether he was concerned about Mustaine‘s reputation as someone who is difficult to work with:

“We [LAMB OF GOD and MEGADETH] had toured together in 2005; we did Gigantour together, and he and I have caught up and become… I wouldn’t say friends, but, you know, acquaintances. And so, we would talk throughout the day and throughout the tour, and it was fun then. So, coming back into it, that really didn’t scare me at all. And I’ve heard those stories too. I think people like to pick on Dave, because it’s easy to pick on the king. This is the guy, for me, that created this whole thing, so it’s always easy to pick on the guy at the top.”

On whether he knew the new MEGADETH guitarist Kiko Loureiro before they played together:

“I did not know Kiko. It was a funny story. He comes into the house, and I’m kind of greeting him and helping him get his stuff. We had like a little rental house up in the hills there. And he’s pulling all his stuff in, and we set up that night and just talked for awhile about music and all this different stuff. And I asked him what he had been doing recently, and he told me about this solo record that he had done. And I was, like, ‘Oh, man. I’d love to hear it. I didn’t know that you had done that.’ And so he hands it to me, and I’m kind of checking it out. And the drummer [on the CD] is Marco Minnemann, which is one of these just phenom drummers — just an unbelievable player. And I’m, like, ‘How long is it gonna take these guys to figure out I’m such a hack compared to these dudes?’ It’s unbelievable how talented these people are. And then living with Kiko, he has just the most incredible music ability I’ve ever seen in my life. I’m not gonna come out and say he’s the best guitar player in MEGADETH, ’cause I didn’t know the other guys… well, actually, I did know a couple of the other guys… But I had never played with a guitar player like him at all — just the way he thinks, the way he plays is absolutely very, very different than anything I’ve ever heard, and I think it’s a really fresh take on thrash. And certainly within this new record, he’s slaying it.”

On playing two sets every night with MEGADETH and LAMB OF GOD when the two bands tour together in November:

“We are joining forces across the whole U.K. Actually, we’re doing Wenbley Arena over there together, and I’m gonna do double duty on those. And there is talk of having us do a North American run together early next year, so I’d be doing it every night. I’m carb-loading before the show. I have been working really, really hard over the past probably ten years to keep myself in shape. And so, my normal routine is to make sure that I can go for… what I try to do is about a ten-mile run every day, and then I play the LAMB OF GOD show. So I figure those two things together are probably gonna equal what I do with these guys.”

MEGADETH‘s fifteenth studio album, “Dystopia”, will be released on January 22, 2016. Album was recorded earlier in the year in Nashville, Tennessee and was mixed by Josh Wilbur, who has previously worked with LAMB OF GOD, ALL THAT REMAINS and GOJIRA.