Diamond Head’s Brian hopes Megadeth man will reconnect over dropped collaboration as he reflects on “support system” provided by Metallica

Brian Tatler

Support system: Brian Tatler

Diamond Head mainman Brian Tatler says Megadeth’s Dave Mustaine is too embarrassed to reconnect with him over a collaboration project the pair began but never finished.

The idea collapsed in its early stages due to the 2002 accident which led Mustaine to believe his career was over. But NWOBHM star Tatler hopes they’ll be able to finish the job eventually.

He tells Bravewords: “He feels embarrassed that he kind of let me down. But he split Megadeth up when he had that arm injury – he sold all his equipment, his amps and everything.

“I imagine it was quite stressful, quite a shock to the system to be told, ‘You might not play guitar again’. So obviously he had to put our project on hold.

“If he ever phones I’m not going to say ‘No’.”

Tatler reveals the collaboration hadn’t been underway for long, amounting to no more than a few emails, ideas and rough demos. “We never got to the stage where Dave started writing vocals or lyrics,” he says. “But it’s entirely in his court. It’s not for me to say.”

By his own admission Diamond Head haven’t had a blemish-free career, something he puts down to never having learned that the “music business” consists of music and business rather than just the creative aspect.

And Tatler is happy to acknowledge his debt of gratitude to Metallica, who have covered four Diamond Head songs and kept the band in the spotlight.

He explains: “Without Metallica we wouldn’t be going now. We split in 1985 when everything dried up, and we wouldn’t have reformed without them. They’re like Diamond Head’s support system – they breathed new life into the band by namechecking us hundreds of times and covering our songs.”

The income generated from the thrash giants recording tracks like Am I Evil has kept Tatler sane, he says. “I don’t know what I would have done without that. We never made money in the early days. I was on the dole after we finished – I had nothing left and I was living at home with my parents. I probably wouldn’t have my own house now.”

But it’s strange for him to live with the fact that so many people think Am I Evil is a Metallica track: “That’s so weird,” he admits.

“You buy a Metallica record and it’s got Am I Evil on it, and you look carefully and it says, ‘Originally recorded by Diamond Head.’ You go, ‘What? I better check them out.’

“Of course, to me, everybody should know about Diamond Head because I’ve been in the band for 35 years. But there are millions of kids who have never heard a thing. The only way I’m going to reach them is through Metallica.”

Related stories: