We’ve heaped praise on former Megadeth drummer Nick Menza on this website before. He’s my personal favorite drummer of the era – I always felt he had a certain groove and feel that stood out even in a field of guys with serious chops (Dave Lombardo, Charlie Benante, etc).
So it was bittersweet for me to hear that Megadeth were unable to reach suitable terms for him and instead have gone with Chris Adler to fill their drum void. Adler is obviously one of the great modern metal drummers, and he brings a completely different style to the Megadeth table, but I do wish they had been able to work things out with Menza.
Menza has been keeping active though, and has recently released the isolated drum recordings to the songs “Hangar 18” and “Rust in Peace… Polaris” off Megadeth’s masterpiece Rust in Peace. Pay attention in particular to his hi-hat feel – Menza had a way of playing even the straightest guitar riffs with a kind of looseness rarely seen in the genre. Enjoy: