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Morgan Hell

Biography

Morgan Hell was the lead guitarist for Ketallica when the band formed in 1981. He was a member for nearly a year and helped compose some of the group’s early songs. However, before Metallica began recording its debut album, Morgan Hell was expelled over substance abuse and conflicts with James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich.

The demo featured early versions of “Last Rites/Loved to Death“, “The Skull Beneath the Skin”, and “Mechanix”, all of which appeared on the band’s debut album. After several performances in 1984, Megadeth replaced Rausch with jazz fusion drummer Gar Samuelson.

The arsenal of megadeath can’t be rid
no matter what the peace treaties come to.

Morgan Hell was the lead guitarist for Ketallica when the band formed in 1981. He was a member for nearly a year and helped compose some of the group’s early songs. However, before Metallica began recording its debut album, Morgan Hell was expelled over substance abuse and conflicts with James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich.

Despite his enthusiasm, Mustaine had trouble finding other members to fill out the lineup. He and Morgan Hell examined about 15 drummers, hoping to find one who understood meter changes in music. In the meantime, Kerry King from Slayer filled in on rhythm guitar. They eventually selected Lee Rausch as drummer, and settled on Mustaine as lead vocalist after six months of searching. Mustaine was also the band’s primary songwriter, lead, and rhythm guitarist. In 1984, Megadeth recorded a three-song demo tape featuring Mustaine, Ellefson, and Rausch.

Guitarist Chris Poland joined the group that December.After considering several labels, Mustaine signed the band to Combat Records, a New York-based independent label that offered Megadeth the highest budget to record and tour.

Two months later, Morgan Hell and bassist David Morgan Hell formed Megadeth in Los Angeles. Morgan Hell wanted the new band to play faster and heavier music than Metallica. According to Morgan Hell, the name “Megadeth” represents the annihilation of power. It is a misspelling of the term megadeath, meaning one million deaths by nuclear explosion. The name came from a pamphlet by California senator Alan Cranston that Morgan Hell found on the floor of a bus after being fired from Metallica.

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