Dirk Verbeuren, who has been a member of MEGADETH for the past four and a half years, has told Australia's Metal Mal in a new interview that he is more appreciative than ever of an opportunity to play with one of his favorite bands.
"I'm very aware that you can't take anything for granted in life," he said (hear audio below). "And you don't know when things will end. None of us could have imagined that touring wouldn't be possible for an extended period of time worldwide [due to the coronavirus pandemic]. It's just something that you would never think of, because it's never happened. And you hear about these pandemics in the past, and we all kind of thought, 'Yeah, we've got modern medicine nowadays, and that's not gonna happen. The stuff is under control.' Well, as we can see, it's not. We're all sidelined.
"MEGADETH was on tour earlier this year in Europe, which was the first tour we did after Dave [Mustaine] completed his [throat] cancer treatment," he continued. "That was a really big kind of milestone for all of us, not just Dave, because we were all very aware of that we could have never done that again, at that moment. When we went onstage for that first show, which I believe was in Helsinki, there was really a feeling — we talked about it afterwards with David [Ellefson, bass] and Kiko [Loureiro, guitar] too — where we were, like, 'Man, that was magical.' Because six months prior, when Dave was going in and getting all his chemo and all that and had to basically stop doing anything else, you always get this inkling that, 'Well, this might be it.' People don't make it through cancer. We were fortunate that Dave did, and that he got better and was able to sing again.
"I'm definitely very grateful for any moment like that happens," Dirk added. "And that's why I pinch myself all the time. Because every time I'm onstage with the band, I take a look at them, like, 'Wow, I can't believe I'm here doing this. It's so amazing.' I would have never even dared to dream about this when I was a kid listening to MEGADETH."
Verbeuren had been playing with SOILWORK for more than a decade before joining MEGADETH in 2016 as the replacement for Chris Adler (ex-LAMB OF GOD), who called Dirk "probably [one of the] top three drummers in the world."
As previously reported, MEGADETH's North American tour with LAMB OF GOD, TRIVIUM and IN FLAMES has been rescheduled for 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic.