Monday, February 22, 2016


If I were to use the word "bleeding" in association with Megadeth, most people would think of bleeding eardrums.

According to a LinkedIn post, the true association should be bleeding edge - and Dave Mustaine should be considered a technologist.

Heavy metal icons Megadeth have always been on the bleeding edge of technology when it comes to fusing their groundbreaking music with innovative marketing ideas to connect with their fans.

For example, Megadeth has a website. Now that may not seem shocking to most modern music fans, but Megadeth had a website before Microsoft had a web browser.

On October 31st, 1994 when the band’s critically acclaimed sixth studio album Youthanasia came out, they were the first band to ever have a website. “We can always sit back and say we were very first to do that,” says Mustaine. “We won tons of awards for our internet sites, the chat room, the bulletin boards, all of the graphics, the audio stuff. It just was mind blowing to people at the time.”

Fast forward a couple of decades, and Mustaine is talking specifics about virtual reality:

“Scott showed me the complete 360 thing and I said, this is great, but never did I see that filming format on a mobile buggy-cam like Mary did,” says Mustaine. He continues, “Mary and her team from CEEK had this 360 camera set up on top of this moving remote camera and it was going all around us while we were playing. It’s totally different from just standing there and you turn around and see the guy on this side and this guy on the other. You can't ever walk behind – now you can, now you can walk next to me on the right side or you walk next to me on my left side.”

Special attention was also paid to the audio. Apparently Mustaine learned his lessons from the quadrophonic craze of the early 1970s.

Mustaine explains, “So if you're looking at me from the front and the buggy-cam is creeping up, you are going to hear the drums in front of you. If the camera comes along to my side, and you are looking at my left side, the drums are naturally going to be on your right, even if you turn sideways. So, the whole point of view within and everything like that changes is, I think, is super, super awesome and adds to the realism.”

To think of the ramifications of this, consider American football. As Roone Arledge and other innovations modified the football viewing experience on TV, things changed so much - the multiple cameras, the superimposed graphics - that going to the stadium was inferior to watching the game on TV. Modern stadiums, such as the one in Santa Clara and the new one in Inglewood, are now trying to catch up.

Will the same thing happen in music? Will a Megadeth concert be inferior to Megadeth's new virtual reality experience? And will the concert experience have to change so that audiences will continue to buy tickets?