During a conversation with COS, Dave Mustaine singled out the one Megadeth solo he nailed in one take while discussing his approach to recording solo parts.
The frontman said about how he instructed his bandmates in the studio:
“If I have a song and I have an idea for something and I hear a solo, I’ve always said, ‘There’s their way, our way, and my way.’ What that means is, when it comes to solo time, I’ll say, ‘Okay, go ahead [and do it your way].’
“If it’s great, it’s great. Marty [Friedman] pulled that off a lot of times. Not a lot of the players have had their very first solo be the keeper solo.
“I mean, in all the songs I’ve played on – almost 200 – I’ve only had one song ever – ever! – where I kept the first solo I played, and that was in ‘Holy Wars.'”
During the rest of the conversation, Dave shared the story behind the horse featured on the back side of the cover of Megadeth’s 2004 album “The System Has Failed,” saying:
“There was a lot of stuff on that cover that was symbolic. Like the horse-drawn carriage on the back was symbolic of death. That horse was actually [based on] one of my horses who died a tragic, bloody, gory, gory death.
“I was super shocked and traumatized by it. I’m not a horse owner for myself. I got them for my wife.
“So we had this horse who gave birth to a colt who was stillborn, and when he came out his hoofs cut her intestine completely in half so it disconnected. We got there and there was blood up all the walls as high as my head. I had been sober for about five years at that point, but I was so freaked out.
“A groomster said, ‘You need to have a cigarette and blow smoke on a picture of the horse’ and I hadn’t smoked either. So that day I drank again and smoked again.
“I went home and I was just in tears. My wife goes, ‘Oh my god, what happened?’. So that’s the horse on the back.”