Original Slayer drummer Dave Lombardo was left in a state of shock after the group's sudden decision to have him replaced for the forthcoming Australian tour set to begin in mere two days. The drummer issued an official statement in which he starts off by apologizing to fans, adding that he is "saddened and shocked" by the current situation.
"I want to personally apologize to all of our fans in Australia who have bought tickets for the tour expecting to see me in my usual place on the drums."
"So that you all know the truth, as of the end of the business day on February 14th, I was notified that I would not be drumming for the tour in Australia. I'm saddened, and to be honest I am shocked by the situation."
Lombardo continues by talking about the band's financial situation, revealing what apparently seems to be some murky business going on within the group and it's management. The drummer discovers that despite touring the world for most of 2012, he still hasn't received payment for his share of work. To make matters worse, Lombardo was allegedly told he won't be paid prior to signing a longform contract.
"Last year, I discovered 90% of Slayer's tour income was being deducted as expenses, including the professional fees paid to management, costing the band millions of dollars and leaving 10% or less to split amongst the four of us. In my opinion, this is not the way a band's business should operate. I tried rectifying it by letting my bandmates know, and Tom and I hired auditors to figure out what happened, but I was denied access to detailed information and the necessary backup documents."
"I spent the Christmas and New Year holidays realizing I had toured all over the world in 2012, but yet had not been paid (except a small advance) or provided a proper accounting for a full year's sweat and blood. On top of this, I was told that I would not be paid until I signed a longform contract which gave me no written assurance of how much or on what basis management would deduct commissions, nor did it provide me access to the financial budgets or records for review. It also forbade me to do interviews or make statements having to do with the band, in effect a gagging order."
After trying to clear things out by proposing a new business model to the rest of the band, Lombardo was turned down, with guitarist Kerry King saying he will find another drummer. The situation escalated rather quickly and Lombardo was kicked off the Australian tour within days.
"Last Monday, I sat down with Kerry and Tom to rehearse for Australia and to propose a new business model that I felt was the best way forward for Slayer to confidently protect itself so we could do what we do best... play for the fans. Kerry made it clear he wasn't interested in making changes and said if I wanted to argue the point, he would find another drummer. On Thursday, I arrived at rehearsals at 1 p.m. as scheduled, but Kerry did not show. Rather, at 6:24 p.m. I received an email from the lawyers saying I was being replaced for the Australian dates", said the drummer via official Facebook page.
Right now, Lombardo isn't the only one shocked by such a turn of events with fans around the globe showing their disbelief and still trying to grasp the entire situation. The drummer however "remains hopeful" that the issues will be resolved and hopes for the best possible outcome.
"I remain hopeful that we can resolve our issues. But once again, I sincerely apologize to all of our fans in Australia who spent their money expecting to see the three of us original Slayer members. I look forward to seeing you in the future."
So what just happened here? We know he wasn't officially kicked out of the band, but this sure seems like the next closest thing. Do you think Slayer can and should go on without Dave Lombardo? And what do you think about all the issues he mentioned or the way he was treated? Let us know in the comments section below.