“I had two viable options: to be in Megadeth or not. I chose my personal life. No regrets”: Kiko Loureiro opens up on what he meant by “freedom,” how he trained up his replacement, and why he suggested Marty Friedman should return

Guitarist Kiko Loureiro of American thrash metal group Megadeth performing live on stage at Bloodstock Open Air Festival in Derbyshire, on August 13, 2017.
(Image credit: Will Ireland/Future)

When Kiko Loureiro joined Megadeth on April 2, 2015, he knew he’d experience a windfall of fame, fortune, and emotions. It must have been difficult to leave Angra, the band he’d co-founded in 1991. But it must have been even more difficult assuming the role of lead guitarist in Dave Mustaine’s band Megadeth – a hotbed of activity since Marty Friedman split the scene in 1999.

After Friedman, there was Al Pitrelli, Glen Drover and Chris Broderick. None of them stuck; in fact, most of them flamed out in infamy. And so, by 2015, many assumed Mustaine to be impossible to work with and that Megadeth was on its last legs.

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Andrew Daly

Andrew Daly is an iced-coffee-addicted, oddball Telecaster-playing, alfredo pasta-loving journalist from Long Island, NY, who, in addition to being a contributing writer for Guitar World, scribes for Rock Candy, Bass Player, Total Guitar, and Classic Rock History. Andrew has interviewed favorites like Ace Frehley, Johnny Marr, Vito Bratta, Bruce Kulick, Joe Perry, Brad Whitford, Rich Robinson, and Paul Stanley, while his all-time favorite (rhythm player), Keith Richards, continues to elude him.