Metal megastars Megadeth were in Montreal last Friday night at the Bell Centre for the first annual Gigantour which also featured Dream Theater, Anthrax and Fear Factory. The band performed in front of some 9 000 die hard fans and did not disappoint. Before the show, I had the chance to sit with the band’s guitarist Glen Drover, a Montreal native, to talk about the band’s future, among other things.
The Concordian: How does it feel to be playing in Montreal tonight?
Drover: This is where I grew up until I was about 16. Not only that but the fans here are so rabid too. For me, it rivals most places that we’ve played in Europe and I am not just saying that because we are here. We’ve played just about everywhere you can think, but the fans here are just so electric and so vocal. It’s really exciting to play here especially in a venue like this. We grew up seeing shows at the Montreal forum and here we are playing and headlining the new version of the Montreal Forum, so it’s cool stuff.
The Concordian: I read that you guys will be filming tonight’s show. What for?
Drover: All the bands are filmed for the Gigantour DVD, a compilation of every band.
The Concordian: What has the atmosphere been like on the first Gigantour?
Drover: It’s been really good; there have been no problems. Everybody gets along really well. There’s a lot of respect between the crew and the bands. Everyone’s just really excited to be doing this. It’s been really smooth.
The Concordian: I imagine some of the bands you’ve been touring with have come up to you and told you that Megadeth has inspired them?
Drover: Some. It’s amazing! To influence some of these newer bands is amazing. The band has been around for over 20 years but good music stands a test of time and will continue to influence people.
The Concordian: Do you think there’s a need for metal tours out there right now?
Drover: Yah and I think especially nowadays it’s definitely a really good idea because there are so many bands and tours, not all the kids can afford to go to every show. So when you have festivals with multiple bands, you get six, seven or eight bands you like on a bill, that’s pretty cool. You don’t have to spend a million dollars to see all the bands you really like. It’s the right time to do it because there’s so much out there and as you can see it works well because there are so many different festivals running now. These running festivals like Ozzfest and now Gigantour is starting this year, it’s good.
The Concordian: Do you think there’s a good metal presence in today’s music scene?
Drover: Yah, there’s so many different branches off that rock tree so I think there’s something for everybody. I think there’s a lot of kids that are getting into more than classic stuff which is cool, be it because of their dad of whoever. Then you have all these bands that are different variations of rock and metal, so it’s cool.
The Concordian: Would you say that kids are more open-minded today?
Drover: That’s a difficult one. I don’t know it’s hard to say. Nothing very noticeable.
The Concordian: Megadeth released a Greatest Hits record back in June. Do you guys have any plans for new material?
Drover: We’ve been messing around with different riffs. Dave has tons of ideas, tons of things on tape. We’ve worked on little parts here and there but we really don’t know what’s going to happen because Dave is going to make his announcement of what he wants to do, whether we are going to continue as Megadeth or what’s going to happen. I think with the new line-up, we are really heavily influenced especially from the older material so we are coming from more of a heavy background. I think that’s an area that Dave wants to go back to. I think the last album is the beginning of going back to the older style of Megadeth, the earlier albums. He’s the one that’s going to announce and determine what he’s going to do soon. I don’t know when but soon.
The Concordian: If this were to continue, is there anything you guys haven’t achieved that you would want to achieve?
Drover: Well I mean the one thing that is coming up that we haven’t done before which I am really looking forward to is that we haven’t played in South America. That’s some new territory for us, not for Dave but for the rest of us. Playing some of the shows over there in October, we’re really looking forward to that. What’s been happening in the last year’s been incredible. Not only joining Megadeth and how everything’s been working out but working as well as we do together, that’s an amazing thing right there. To do the first tour and now doing arenas and amphitheatres, it’s everything we ever dreamed about doing. I don’t think there’s really anything I can think of.
The Concordian: How would you describe Megadeth’s current line-up?
Drover: It’s a great chemistry. When we first started rehearsing, we were rehearsing with the drummer which was in the band for the longest time, which was Nick Menza, like everybody knows but things weren’t working out with him both musically and personally. So it’s a good thing that things went the way they did and he had to be replaced because it wouldn’t have worked out and caused problems. Getting my brother into the fold that was weird. For me getting into the band that was weird, for both of us to get in it’s like lightning strikes twice in the same place, which doesn’t usually happen. He brought a lot of positivity to the band. He’s a team player. He’s great to work with, there’s a great chemistry between me and him because we’ve been playing together since we were ten. Everybody works together really well, everybody’s a team player and that makes the biggest difference.
The Concordian: So you like having your brother out on the road with you?
Drover: Yah. We’ve always done things together but not on this level, so it’s been great.
The Concordian: Megadeth has been around for more than 20 years now. How has the band remained relevant?
Drover: I don’t know, it’s like I was saying before really good music stands a test of time and that’s all I’m going to say about that.
The Concordian: Did you ever think you guys would get to this point?
Drover: No one really ever knows that but there have been a lot of line-up changes along the way as you know but all I can comment on is our situation. Things are going so well not only musically but personally as well. We all get along really well and there’s a lot of respect. Let’s see how far it goes, hopefully it will go for quite some time.