DAVE MUSTAINE: ‘It Was Honorable That KIRK HAMMETT Took My Solos And Did His Best To Play Them As I Did’

Dave Mustaine Kirk Hammett

During a recent interview with Guitar World magazine, Dave Mustaine, the frontman of MEGADETH who was previously a member of METALLICA for a brief period from 1981 to 1983 before being replaced by Kirk Hammett, was asked if he has heard METALLICA‘s latest album 72 Seasons.

“No, I have not heard METALLICA‘s latest record,” Mustaine responded. “But there was a time around 20 years ago when we were not being friendly toward each other when I couldn’t listen to their music when it came on the radio. But none of that bothers me anymore, and it’s not why I haven’t heard the record, especially after the Big Four thing that we did. I really think we should do that again.”

When asked if he feels the recent flak that Kirk has taken for his solos is fair, Mustaine responded:  “It depends on which solos you’re talking about. [Laughs] Jokes aside, I’ve always kind of poked fun at Kirk. And unfairly so, as he never did anything to me. Whenever I felt singled out, picked on, or antagonized by James [Hetfield] or Lars [Ulrich], it was really easy to pick on Kirk. But the truth is Kirk did me an honor by trying to play my solos on those early songs the way he did…

“Well, I think that some people would have just started over again. So, I thought it was honorable that Kirk took my solos and did his best to play them as I did. That couldn’t have been easy. But as far as his new solos on the new METALLICA album, I haven’t heard them, so I can’t comment. But I will say that I think it’s sad how quickly some people can turn on people.

“There was a time when Kirk won every guitar contest in the world, and I don’t think he’s gotten any better or worse as a player,” Dave continued. “He’s always been really good. Kirk was a good player when he was in EXODUS. And he’s been steady the entire time he’s been in METALLICA. But does that mean Kirk Hammett is Dave Mustaine? No. And is Dave Mustaine Kirk Hammett? Also, no.”