Megadeth's follow-up to 2016's Dystopia has been a long time coming. The album is finally written, but the thrash legends have hit another snag: they're unable to start recording it since the coronavirus has effectively frozen much of the world and its plans.

If things had gone to schedule, the group would already be in the studio tracking the new album right now. "We've been working on it, and it's written, and it's ready to be recorded," bassist David Ellefson confirmed in an interview with The Metal Voice.

"In fact, we were gonna start recording it toward the end of March," he continued, elaborating, "But, of course, all of this happened. We ended up having to cancel out of the Hell & Heaven Fest in Mexico City, which I think was March 15th. And right after that, we were gonna go to Nashville and get started cutting tracks, but with everything shutting down like this, we obviously have to put health matters for us."

Noting the recording process comes down to more than just the members of the band, Ellefson added, "And it isn't just the four of us — you go in the studio, and now you've got a whole staff of people in studios and catering services and all kinds of other services that go along with making records." With social gatherings stifled at this time, obviously making a record is out of the question, at least in a professional studio.

Ellefson is understanding of the situation, though. "Everybody's locked down right now," he said, looking forward when explaining, "So once the lockdown lifts and it's safe to go back to — I hate to say 'normal life,' but it's safe to basically engage in that again, we will absolutely be ready to rock."

Elsewhere in the interview, the bassist acknowledged that the time the band spent writing and rehearsing together in the same room has culminated in a more complete feeling as he noted, "It feels very cohesive between the four of us."

As for what existing Megadeth album this new record can be compared to, Ellefson felt the new music has shades of the entire catalog. "We've got everything from that real raw, thrashy stuff from Killing Is My Business and Peace Sells; we've got the more refined moments of Youthanasia and Cryptic Writings; so there's all that stuff together," the bassist previewed.

There's also that Ellefson-sung ballad Dave Mustaine had previously mentioned that could potentially appear on the album.

Meanwhile, the bassist is using his downtime during the pandemic to focus on giving back to the community. Tomorrow, (April 11), he'll host the "Oh Say Can You Stream" fundraiser, featuring over 40 artists and actors, to provide online lessons and instruments to aspiring musicians. Learn more here.

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