Somewhat ironically, Mustaine revealed the news to a fan via the celebrity video messaging app Cameo, after recently joining the platform. Mustaine had previously stated that Ellefson’s parts would be replaced after the bassist was fired from the band following the leak of private online sexual encounters.
Addressing a fan named Tina, Mustaine said [as transcribed by Blabbermouth]: “I hear you’re a big pretty fan of [the Megadeth song] ‘Fatal Illusion’ right now. That’s cool. Actually, we’ve got one song on the new album — it’s called ‘The Dogs of Chernobyl’ — which is very similar to ‘Fatal Illusion’ in aggression. So I hope you like that song when you get the new record. It won’t be long. It’s a matter of finishing the parts when I get home [to Tennessee from vacationing in Florida] today and tomorrow. Our bass parts are all done. And it won’t be long.”
Mustaine told fans on his Gimme Radio program “The Dave Mustaine Show” last month that the band had “someone coming in a couple of weeks to replace the bass tracks that we had.”
“Which should be relatively quick because the person we’re talking to is a stellar bass player,” Mustaine added. “And hopefully this will be an ongoing thing after the recording. Or we will find someone prior to the recording that will be our permanent guy going forward.”
We still don’t know who exactly came in to re-record the bass. It definitely wasn’t ex-Metallica bassist Jason Newsted, who dismissed rumors that he might join the band.
Before his dismissal, Ellefson had boasted that his bass playing — tracked in a Nashville studio in May 2020 — and interplay with Megadeth drummer Dirk Verbeuren on the new album reminded him of the interaction between Rush’s Geddy Lee and Neil Peart.
“It’s Megadeth — it’s not Rush, obviously,” Ellefson told 96.7 KCAL-FM, “but in the field of what we do, there were these moments that I was just going, ‘Oh, my God.’ This is me as a kid going, ‘This is my Geddy/Neil moment right here.'”
It would seem that only the band, the recording engineers, and close associates will ever hear the Ellefson version of the the new album. Stay tuned to Heavy Consequence for further updates on Megadeth’s new bassist as their upcoming tour with Lamb of God approaches.
Watch Mustaine’s Cameo video here, and check out our interview with the Megadeth frontman, in which he offered an update from the studio late last year, below.