Working With The Best – Mark Menghi Of Metal Allegiance

Metal Allegiance Fallen Heroes EP cover ghostcultmag In part 2 of our interview with Mark Menghi of Metal Allegiance we discussed the recording sessions for the recent Fallen Heroes EP (Nuclear Blast). Mark went into details the choice of tracks and the singers they worked with.

Mark Osgueda of Metal Allegiance, by Omar Cordy/OJC Pics

Mark Osgueda of Metal Allegiance, by Omar Cordy/OJC Pics

Mark first discussed the choice of matching up singers with their tracks on Fallen Heroes, such as Mark Osgueda of Death Angel on David Bowie’s ‘Suffragette City’:

There was no other singer. We experienced David Bowie’s passing together. When Dave Ellefson told us that night in San Francisco, and I remember it was on stage right. It was the three of us, and we went over to Mike, he just out his head down. We shared that experience together and it sucked. We didn’t have any singers in mind for this, we just wanted to record these tracks. We didn’t know what the fuck we were doing. Mike (Portnoy) is the one who picked ‘Suffragette City’, and we just said “Mark”. There is no other singer just because we experienced this with Mark. Mark is one of us. He is very much apart of that name. We gave him this track, he was so excited. I’ve never seen him so excited to sing a song before. He killed it. With Alissa (Alissa White-Gluz), she was nor the first singer tapped to do ‘Life in the Fast Lane’. In fact, ‘Life in the Fast Lane’ we weren’t even going to do. It was going to be a different song. We didn’t know what we were going to do. We gave the track to two different signers, and we weren’t feeling what they were doing and they weren’t feeling the song because it’s definitely a different spin on it if you listen to it. It’s not the traditional ‘Life in the Fast Lane’. Alex suggested Alissa, we gave her the track, and we heard that performance, we were like wow. We’ve never heard her sing like that before. It’s amazing, and that’s how it came about. Troy (Sanders, of Mastodon) was already locked in (for ‘Iron Fist’ by Motorhead) because he was on tour with us. Same thing with Mark, so ‘Life in the Fast Lane’ was definitely the tricky one of the bunch.

Alissa White-Gluz, by Rich Price Photography

Alissa White-Gluz, by Rich Price Photography

She’s impressive and I don’t think people have ever really heard her sing just a straight up rock and roll song, and she killed it!

What I loved about working with Alissa was her drive. She was never happy or satisfied which was great. She was like I can do this better, let me try this again. She was always pushing herself. That’s rare. It’s rare to work with someone who wants to top them self and top they’re past performance. That’s awesome, and I think it shows. Her passion and her drive shows in the song, and I know we couldn’t have been any happier with the performance. We weren’t expecting that at all so it was definitely a pleasant surprise.

Out of curiosity is there anybody that you haven’t worked with that you would like to that’s on your “Metal Allegiance bucket list” of collaborators?

Yeah, his name is James Hetfield!

That would be awesome!

I’m a huge Metallica fan, and Cliff Burton as a bass player, he’s my guy. The question always comes up who do you look up to, and my answer was him and Steve Harris. We’ve had the honor to jam with Geezer Butler, this was under a different name back in 2012. I know Geezer well, and I befriended him, and it’s still crazy because I’m a Sabbath freak. Metallica, same thing with Cliff Burton. I tried to incorporate the three styles of Burton, Harrison and Geezer into my playing. But I love James! When it comes to his song writing, and the way he crafts a song lyrically, and he is probably one of the best right-handed guitarists to play rhythmically. Some may argue with that, but to me, it’s James. I wouldn’t even stand on the fucking stage if he was there.

We’re all friends with each other. We’re pretty tight with Metallica, and Mark goes a long way back with Metallica, the Death Angel/Metallica connection. Mark hangs out with Kirk all the time, so we have the connection there. We’ll see. We’ll see what happens.


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