On his Gimme Radio program The Dave Mustaine Show yesterday (17 June) Mustaine addressed the issue of the bass tracks being re-tracked by another musician after Ellefson's firing after explicit video footage involving the bassist was posted on Twitter.
"I just wanna thank you for all the kinds words and support as we get ready for this next tour and continue to hunt for a new bass player," Mustaine began."We are making progress. The record's being completed, and we're gonna have someone coming in 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. 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 already know that person won't be former Metallica bassist Jason Newsted after the social media-shunning musician's artist wife Nicole Newsted confirmed on Instagram that he would not be joining the band. So what candidates does that leave?
Former Megadeth bassist James LoMenzo who played with the band between 2006 and 2010 could be in contention. But whoever Mustaine chooses, we also know what could have been from what Ellefson told Redlands, California radio station 96.7 KCAL-FM after he'd laid down his track for the album in a Nashville studio over a year ago. He compared his interplay with Megadeth drummer Dirk Verbeuren with that of Geddy Lee and Neil Peart of Rush – who were recently voted the greatest rhythm section of all time by MusicRadar readers.
"I feel like on the new Megadeth record, me and Dirk have those same moments," Ellefson said. "It's Megadeth — it's not Rush, obviously — 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.'"
Whether Ellefson's replacement will replicate that remains to be heard.