This Dave Mustaine / Lars Ulrich beef about Metallica's No Life Til Leather demo is back in the news thanks to… Dave Mustaine tweeting about it.
A quick refresher, Metallica promised an expanded release of their 1982 demo tape, No Life Til Leather , for years and nothing was released. A few weeks ago, Dave Mustaine revealed it's due to a songwriting credit dispute about two songs on the demo, where Lars wanted credit for songs Dave claimed he wrote on his own. Here is the tweet exchange from a few weeks ago:
James contacted me 2 years ago. We were going to officially release the "No Life Till Leather" demo as a record, w/27 tracks, pics, the whole enchilada, and the talks broke down because Lars wanted credit on two songs I wrote every note and word to. I have the texts. I passed. https://twitter.com/pastorirodrigo/status/936176417183854593 …
In a new Twitter exchange earlier today, Thursday, February 8th, a fan goaded Mustaine by joking that the reason there is no Big Four (which Mustaine claimed was a hold-up by Metallica, while everybody else was on board) is because Mustaine blocked the No Life Til Leather release. The fan included a bunch of smiling/laughing emojis but Mustaine's response was as serious as could be:
"Who knows. I ain’t giving my songwriting credit to Lars for songs I wrote in Panic." wrote the Megadeth frontman.
Interestingly, when Lars was asked about the hold up on the No Life Til Leather demo in 2016, he took the high road, saying a legal issue prevented the release, without going into specifics:
Ulrich told Metal Forces in 2016 that "some unexpected difficulties on the legal side… prevented the 'No Life 'Til Leather' box set and our vision for how we were going to kick this whole reissue series off. We spent some time doing that dance, but then James and I decided that it wasn't worth it getting bogged down in all the unpleasantries, because this was supposed to be a celebration and not end up being a tug of war, so we thought, 'You know what? Fuck it. We'll just move on to 'Kill 'Em All'," he said.
Ulrich did not want to get into the details of the exact issues that were preventing the demo tape from being released. "It's a little more complicated than that," he said. "There's no reason to go deeper into it. It was just something that we hadn't expected."
This seems like something that has deeply affected Mustaine, that he refuses to budge on.