Megadeth will have a one-off reunion with their long-serving former guitarist, Marty Friedman, at their upcoming Tokyo show at the Nippon Budokan.
Per a report from Rolling Stone, Friedman will join the band for their three-song encore at the February 27 show – marking his first time performing with the band in over 23 years. Friedman himself has lived in Tokyo for over 15 years, but Megadeth never performed at the Budokan while he was part of the line-up.
In a statement to the publication, founding member and band leader Dave Mustaine described the imminent reunion as “like a gigantic birthday and Christmas present” for him.
“When Marty said [he] can play at this gig, I thought, ‘This is so magnificent’,” he said. “It’s gonna be so much fun to get Kiko [Loureiro, current Megadeth guitarist] and Marty together, because they’re both geniuses on guitar.”
Mustaine also noted that, because Megadeth have not performed in Tokyo since 2017, he thought extending an invite to Friedman would be “a very thoughtful thing to do”.
“Megadeth has not been a band that has had a lot of guest appearances from other players,” he said. “We are not a jam band. I asked Kiko how he felt about this, and Kiko is completely confident in [Friedman’s] guitar playing.
“We want it to be a gift. So everybody who bought that ticket before today, you’re welcome.”
In his own statement, Friedman said that he felt “immense joy and some serious adrenaline” ahead of the Tokyo performance. “I’m extremely proud of the part that I played in Megadeth’s history and legacy,” he said. “I’m also very, very proud of the band’s many great achievements and continued success in my absence.
“I am looking forward to playing with Megadeth at this very cool place.”
Friedman originally joined Megadeth in February of 1990, and would remain with the band for nearly a full decade before his departure in January of 2000. In that time, he played on three Platinum-certified albums by the band – 1990’s ‘Rust in Peace’, 1992’s ‘Countdown to Extinction’ and 1994’s ‘Youthanasia’ – as well as 1997’s ‘Cryptic Writings’ and 1999’s ‘Risk’.
He then departed the band on the grounds of creative differences, and was replaced by Al Pitrelli. Since leaving Megadeth, he has released multiple solo albums and worked on several albums by the band Tourniquet. He also became a Japanese television personality, appearing on Hebimeta-san (“Mr. Heavy Metal”), Rock Fujiyama and The Quiz Show.
Megadeth’s Budokan show will be broadcast as a livestream event on February 27, entitled They Only Come Out At Night. Information and tickets can be found via Dreamstage here.