It’s Official: SLAYER Reunites, Announces First Shows In Five Years

SLAYER, the iconic metal band, has officially announced its reunion and is set to make a triumphant return to the live stage this September. The quartet, comprising Tom Araya (bass, vocals), Kerry King (guitar), Gary Holt (guitar), and Paul Bostaph (drums), will headline two major festivals, Riot Fest in Chicago, IL, on September 22, and Louder Than Life in Louisville, KY, on September 27.

Reflecting on the upcoming performances, Tom Araya expressed the unmatched thrill of being on stage for 90 minutes, sharing intense energy with the fans. Kerry King echoed the sentiment, emphasizing the significance of SLAYER to both the band and their dedicated fanbase. The reunion marks the first live appearance since the conclusion of their world tour in November 2019.

The announcement of SLAYER’s participation in Louder Than Life was met with enthusiasm from Danny Wimmer of Danny Wimmer Presents, who declared the band’s performance as an “earth-shattering” addition to the festival’s 10th-anniversary celebration. With over 140 bands on five stages, the event promises to be the biggest Louder Than Life lineup to date.

In a recent interview, Kerry King discussed the band’s decision to disband, revealing that he had not been in contact with Tom since the final show over four years ago. He disclosed that Araya’s retirement decision was unexpected, attributing it to the wear and tear of the road and a desire for a more private life. Personality differences, a longstanding aspect of the band dynamic, also contributed to the eventual split.

Despite the differences, King acknowledged the musical chemistry that fueled SLAYER’s success and admitted that while he and Araya may not socialize, they created great music together. Responding to questions about a potential SLAYER album, Kerry ruled it out, emphasizing his commitment to a new solo project that captures the essence of SLAYER’s sound.

Addressing the possibility of SLAYER touring again, Kerry expressed skepticism, focusing on his upcoming solo career spanning the next decade. SLAYER’s final tour, which spanned 18 months and included over 140 shows worldwide, concluded in 2019. Kerry’s wife emphatically stated there was “not a chance in hell” for a reunion after the farewell tour.

Tom Araya had hinted at retirement as early as 2016, citing the challenges of touring and family commitments. Health issues, including neck surgery that impacted his ability to headbang, further influenced his decision to step back from the demanding touring lifestyle. As SLAYER prepares to reclaim the stage, fans eagerly anticipate the return of the legendary metal pioneers.

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