MEGADETH mainman Dave Mustaine isn’t sure when guitarist Kiko Loureiro is returning to the band
In a recent interview with Greg Prato of Ultimate Guitar, MEGADETH frontman Dave Mustaine discussed the arrival of Teemu Mäntysaari (known for his work with WINTERSUN and SMACKBOUND) as the new touring guitarist for the band.
Teemu has stepped in for the band’s guitarist, Kiko Loureiro, who made an announcement last month that he would be taking a break from MEGADETH‘s “Crush The World” tour to spend time with his children in Finland.
Speaking about Kiko‘s absence from MEGADETH‘s current tour, Dave said: “I love [Kiko] and I want him to get whatever he’s going through worked out. And fortunately, he had mentioned the name of a guy, Teemu Mäntysaari. Teemu came out, and he was prepared.
“I don’t know when Kiko is coming back,” Mustaine continued. “He won’t be back for this run [of tour dates]. He’s at home, and he’s soldiering on — for lack of a better term — and working through whatever it is he needs to get through. Out of respect for him, I didn’t pry and ask what exactly it was — because it’s really none of my business unless he tells me. But I think for any of the fans that are going to say, ‘How’s it going to sound? What’s it going to be like?’
“Don’t worry. I’ve picked good guitar players in the past, and I train them well. Teemu is very capable of playing these songs. In fact, we’re adding new songs to the set. That is really exciting, too.”
Dave added: “I wish Kiko the very best. I love him, and I hope to get some good news from him soon.”
MEGADETH made its debut performance with Mäntysaari on September 6th at Revel in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Born in Tampere, Finland, Teemu Mäntysaari, now 36 years old, started playing the guitar at the age of 12. In 2004, he became a member of the band WINTERSUN and has been part of SMACKBOUND since 2015.
Kiko Loureiro officially joined MEGADETH in April 2015, stepping in approximately five months after Chris Broderick left the group.
Dave Mustaine praised Kiko Loureiro upon his arrival in MEGADETH, hailing him as “definitely the best guitarist we’ve ever had.” These remarks paralleled his earlier comments about Chris Broderick during his time with the band. In 2013, while working on MEGADETH‘s “Super Collider” album, Mustaine had expressed on Twitter that Chris was “without a doubt the best guitarist I’ve ever played with.”