Marty Friedman rejoined MEGADETH on stage for the second time in six months on August 4 at the Wacken Open Air festival in Wacken, Germany. The guitarist performed four songs with his former band: “Trust”, “Tornado Of Souls”, “Symphony Of Destruction” and “Holy Wars… The Punishment Due”.
Earlier today (Tuesday, August 15),MEGADETH guitarist Kiko Loureiro shared a new 10-minute video on his YouTube channel featuring behind-the-scenes footage from Marty‘s latest reunion with MEGADETH. Check it out below.
MEGADETH leader Dave Mustaine teased Friedman‘s appearance ahead of the Wacken performance, writing on social media: “Wacken! Make sure to head over to the faster stage. We have a special surprise for you. You’re not going to want to miss it.”
Prior to this year’s Wacken, Friedman‘s most recent appearance with MEGADETH took place in late February during the band’s first-ever gig at Tokyo, Japan’s famed Budokan. Friedman came up on stage for three songs toward the end of MEGADETH‘s main set: “Countdown To Extinction”, “Tornado Of Souls” and “Symphony Of Destruction”.
Asked in a recent interview with The Aquarian Weekly what it was like to play with MEGADETH again, Marty said: “It was wonderful. What I think is great about MEGADETH is that being a legacy act, there’s also new kids discovering them, and then they discover you and look to see what you’re doing now, so they get that experience of Marty Friedman as well.
“I’ve always been rooting for MEGADETH and they really did great,” he continued. “A lot of the things that they did in my absence led them to a very, very good place, and a lot because of Dave‘s effort and the bandmembers’ efforts. When they made it to Budokan, I was just so glad to hear that. Then they offered me to play and it was just the cherry on top. I had such a great time playing with them. It was something that the fans enjoyed as much as I did.”
Marty also reflected on the experience of performing with MEGADETH at Bodokan in a separate interview with The Entertainment Outlet. He said about sharing the stage with Mustaine again: “It was great. It was something that Dave and I both wanted from day one, and we got it. There was just a lot of good feelings in that building that night — not just between us, but you could see in the audience, there was just something different about it. People were screaming, they were crying, they were smiling. It was a little bit different reaction from a normal show. And it was a great moment, I think.”
In late February, Marty hinted at another potential MEGADETH performance, telling Guitar World: “We (MEGADETH and Friedman) are both playing at Wacken Open Air festival in Germany this summer, so you never know.”
Friedman also revealed that the biggest challenge he faced during his Budokan appearance with MEGADETH was performing his guitar solos the same way fans remember from his original stint with the band.
“If there was any challenge at all, I guess it would be playing the solos the way the fans remember them, which is something I wanted to do,” Friedman noted. “My playing has evolved so much since those songs came out, and there are so many nuances I would naturally do differently now. I had to resist the urge to play it like I would in 2023 and stick to the original way. For example, in a couple of those songs, I entered the solo on the downbeat, with the first note being the root of the chord. I would definitely avoid both of those things now, but apparently, I was fine with it back then.”
A couple of days before the Guitar World interview, Marty was asked by Consequence if he would be open to playing with MEGADETH again, either onstage or in the studio. “Yeah, man, the door’s open,” he said. “I think the door has always been open. It’s really just a matter of doing something that has meaning to it. Meaning for them and meaning for me. So, Budokan is sort of a no-brainer. But if something were to come up that would be a good thing for them and a good thing for me, and add value to it, then I’m all for it. As far as I’m concerned, their band is just kicking so much ass right now, I can’t imagine them needing me for anything. (Laughs) But Budokan was wonderful. There’s other things in the future. My door’s open and we’re on great terms, and I love all the guys in the band. It’s very casual.”