MEGADETH bassist David Ellefson has commented on the band's first show since frontman Dave Mustaine's throat cancer diagnosis. Monday night's (January 20) concert in Helsinki, Finland as the support act for FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH marked MEGADETH's first live appearance in 15 months.
Earlier today, Ellefson shared a picture of the Hartwell Arena show on Facebook and included the following message: "This is a photo from tonight's tour kick off show in Helsinki, one filled with overwhelming gratitude from the four of us for the return of Dave's health, and the privilege for us to perform for you again. The reality and weight of what hung in the balance during Dave's cancer treatments these last months really shone through during the Q&A at the pre-show VIP meet n greet and in each song we performed on that stage. Life is a gift & our health is precious. Thank you for all the prayers and support to Dave and the @megadeth camp these past months....they surely worked! We are blessed to celebrate this new decade on a sold out tour across Europe! Hope to see you there. Godspeed.... #5fdp #megadeth #badwolves (Photo by @rockaroundtblog)"
Mustaine and his bandmates played an 11-song set which included such favorites as "Hangar 18", "Peace Sells" and "Symphony Of Destruction".
MEGADETH's tour with FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH and BAD WOLVES will visit 13 more European countries before ending on February 20 at the Budapest Sportarena in Budapest, Hungary.
The 58-year-old MEGADETH leader revealed his cancer diagnosis last June on social media. Five months later, he gave an interview to Rolling Stone in which he said that he wasn't officially in remission but that he had finished the necessary treatment and had started rehabilitation. He also credited his faith for getting him through the ordeal.
"I've been praying for a long time, and when this whole thing went down, I prayed a lot," he said. "I don't force it on anybody; I never would do that. But I prayed about it, and I believe that that was the whole reason I got healed so fast. A lot of people's asses are probably going to grow together right now that I said this, but the truth of the matter is, everybody has their own things that they believe. And I believe that taking good care of myself and being physically fit, as well as spiritually fit, got me back to this point."
Mustaine said that his positive mindset also helped him through this most testing of journeys.
"I'm not letting the cancer get me down," he said. "I have to thank the fans and obviously my family and God but there was no way I was going to let this take me down. When [BLACK SABBATH guitarist] Tony Iommi got cancer, I thought, 'Oh, my God, he's gonna die.' And I actually cried. I wept, because they had said it was stage 4 cancer. And then, when I got it, I thought, 'Oh, my God. I'm gonna die.' Because I didn't know how bad it was. I thought of the fans and how sad everybody was gonna be. And I thought, 'I have to beat this.' No matter what, there's no way I'm gonna act like I can't do this. I can do anything if I set my mind to it."
MEGADETH has been working on its 16th album, which Ellefson said is due out early next year.
This is a photo from tonight's tour kick off show in Helsinki, one filled with overwhelming gratitude from the four of...