By JESSICA A. BOTELHO
Business is good for the heavy metal band Megadeth because fans are sweating bullets for their thirteenth studio album appropriately titled “TH1RT3EN.”
Guitarist Chris Broderick, the former guitarist for the band Jag Panzer who replaced Glen Drover in Megadeth nearly four years ago, said he is pleased by the reaction of fans and critics alike. Still, he thinks it’s too soon to have the right to go insane about the feedback.
“I always wait until a little time has passed but I’m really happy that people are receiving it very well,” he said.
The album marks the last the band will make under Roadrunner Records and is the second in their history to hit stores on Nov. 1, as 1994’s “Youthanasia” was also released on that date. They are set to be killing it on the road with Motorhead, Volbeat and Lacuna Coil for Gigantour, the critically acclaimed package festival they founded in 2005, which is the same tour name Broderick made his live debut with Megadeth on Feb. 4, 2008.
They will make stops in New England states such as Connecticut and Massachusetts and they will also perform in nearby New York.
While he doesn’t have a favorite place to gig, he said he enjoys playing for fans that are “over the top” and “very vocal” when he’s on stage.
“At the same time, there are fans that like to sit back and listen and that’s nice, as well,” said Broderick. Either way he said, “I can’t wait to go on tour. We’ll be doing four or five songs from the CD.”
According to Broderick, the CD came together “quite quickly” and they composed some of the material while on tour for the band’s last studio album “Endgame.” They worked with producer John Karkazis, better known as Johnny K, who previously worked with Disturbed, Sevendust, Machine Head and Staind, among others.
“He’s concerned about the whole aspect of the song and that’s really his strong point,” said Broderick. “It was really cool to work with him.”
In addition to “TH1RT3EN,” Broderick also recorded guitar parts on “Endgame” shortly after he came onboard. He thinks the new album is more diverse.
“‘Endgame,’ with the exception of a song or two, was pretty in your face,” Broderick said. “‘Thirteen’ pulls from ‘Endgame’ but also from every other Megadeth CD.”
In terms of guitar riffs, he enjoys tracks “Sudden Death” and “Never Dead” best. “Never Dead” can be heard in a trailer for the fantasy action video game of the same name. With the record business not being what it used to be, Broderick feels having their song in a video game is an alternative avenue to reach new fans.
“It’s a great way to get advertising for your music,” he said. “The video game almost gives the song an infinite number of music videos.”
In 1983, the year frontman Dave Mustaine founded Megadeth, the band probably never envisioned their music would be in a video game nearly 30 years later. For Broderick, he never thought he’d end up playing lead guitar for them.
“It’s such an honor to be able to play with such an awesome band,” he said. “I grew up following them and to be on stage with the guys is pretty amazing.”
But Mustaine said he thinks of Broderick as the greatest guitarist Megadeth has ever had and compared meeting Broderick to Ozzy Osbourne fusing with Randy Rhodes. Hearing that, Broderick said, is humbling and terrifying at the same time.
“It’s great that he thinks that of me but it’s like, ‘Wow. I have to live up to that,’” he said.
“The funny thing is the first year and a half that I was playing with Megadeth I never really had time to think about the position I’ve been in. Only now have I been able to relax and step back and feel comfortable with what I’m doing.”