Tom Araya on Kerry King: 'At This Point, We Are Business Partners'

Meanwhile, King confirms the band will likely play Exodus material on upcoming tour.

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Slayer singer/bassist Tom Araya recently gave a detailed insight regarding the internal band relationships, expressing great disappointment in former drummer Dave Lombardo and calling guitarist Kerry King a business partner only. During an interview with City Pages, Araya opened up about the Lombardo matter, saying that the drummer's Facebook rant "left him fuming." He explained, "When we were rehearsing, he seemed to do a 180 and said some things that kind of upset me and Kerry. "Kerry just looked at him and said, 'If you feel that way, then why are we even rehearsing for this tour?' So we wrote him a letter and said, 'Listen, we need to know if you're going to do the shows in Australia. If you're not, we need to do something about that.' We didn't get a reply." While chatting with Brave Words, Tom shared a similar stance, saying that he expected the older issues with Dave to reoccur despite the band doing everything in its power to reach out to him. "Dave did what he did; I tried to be his friend. We all tried to be his friend," Tom concluded. When it comes to his relationship with Kerry King, Araya admitted it comes down to business only, but includes mutual respect nevertheless. "Out of the four individual members of the band, I think me and Jeff were the tightest," he said. "We were the closest. My relationship with Kerry ... it was never a really close relationship. As the years went on, it never solidified. We are in a band together and at this point we are business partners. And we can respect each other along those lines. Yeah, we communicate, we talk and we get along. "We don't share closeness," he continued. "Although what has happened recently with Jeff, it has brought us closer together, because it's just the two of us now. At one point it could have been Dave as well, but Dave changed that completely." During a separate Rolling Stone interview, King brought up an interesting matter not quite discussed before - the idea of Slayer performing Exodus tunes. The band basically got the ball rolling on one of the recent shows as they actually played an Exodus tune, but Kerry now seems quite keen on giving one of the Gary Holt tracks a permanent spot on the group's setlist. "Yeah, we've done that song twice," he explained. "Rather than take any of our songs out, we just added it in. It's an old-school song, and Gary and Paul were both in Exodus. It's the same era, same great music. I love playing that song. I think it's going to be part of the tour." Finally, the guitarist pointed out that he had a feeling that after the spider bite, Jeff wasn't coming back to the band. "To be honest, I knew that after the spider bite that he probably wasn't going to come back," King said. "The door was open for him to come back. If he worked hard enough and was able to do it, I kind of expected for him to come back. But a month before he passed, he was back in the hospital, and I was pretty sure that he wasn't coming back. But I wasn't thinking that he wouldn't be with us at all."

66 comments sorted by best / new / date

    DickHardwood
    I'm not surprised, King doesn't seem like the type of guy who would have any friends, like, at all.
    IbanezJFS
    Yeah I met him at Mayhem last year and he doesn't come off as being friendly.
    Wylde@Heart
    Yet strangely he was good friends with Dimebag Darrell, and I believe he's friends with Zakk Wylde, though I could be mistaken. I'm not trying to talk back to your comment, just making an observation of my own. I definitely agree with you though, because I've seen him in interviews, and watched footage of meet and greets, and my impression is that I'd rather meet any other member of Slayer than him. I feel like I'd be able to hold a conversation with them, whereas with Kerry on the other hand, I don't think he'd be willing to have any sort of conversation.
    Wisthler
    Well remember that Dime and Zakk kinda became friends of everyone in the metal scene.... xD
    RTB668
    I can't think of hardly anyone off that didn't get along with Dime, other than Phil at different times of course.
    Sandman4991
    This is sick. Creating and playing music is supposed to be fun. Something you do because you love it, with your friends, not business partners.
    daken_1
    This is just f*cking sad. At least 'Guns n Roses' seems to be having some fun...
    Syff
    it was great while it lasted. Slayer is and will always be an icon in metal. Let it stay like that and don't demolish it
    Gee Halen
    Slayer, Inc. Goes Public Company CEO announced a restructure the firm's ongoing priorities and business interests. CTO insists the proposed changes will not affect customer experience and will keep the firm maintaining its sales. He added "The recent redundancies enable sleeker and improved efficiency and management. We feel the company shall follow its intended ethos and improve its numbers in the future for an expanded consumer satisfatcion."
    Fuzorz
    all this "business partners" thing..trying play other bands' songs or re-construct Jeff's material...it really looks bad !!
    Dude475
    You mean holt loves playing that song. Kerry couldn't play a real exodus song for his life
    Senor_Homme
    I feel so sorry for Tom, it's weird how things changed for the band in the last couple of years and no one gives a **** if he's not ok with the new state of things.
    cyclonus
    And there I thought one of the joys of being in a successful band was being in it with your friends
    soulgrenade
    It's over Slayer, time to disband and move on. The magic is gone./..
    RTB668
    Honestly, that's how I felt after hearing World Painted Blood. Just seems like most of their really good ideas were gone.
    soul_morf
    it's either daily Dave or daily Slayer on UG these days
    fromzero
    Weren't you crying when it was daily Ted Nugent & Metallica?
    Izzy-Sweet
    I miss Ted Nugent on this site, at least he was funny. And one of his news articles earned me my first ever medal here!
    SniperWolf80mm
    [deleted]
    SniperWolf80mm · Nov 08, 2013 01:44 PM
    KatyPerrysTits
    They are so done. They're a cover band of themselves, and hey don't even seem to be enjoying it
    guitgrinder
    Oh my god, how I love this! Slayer acted so badass and metal for so long and talked shit to no end on Metallica.... now, they are worse than Metallica ever was. At least the Metallica dudes are friends, even if it was about money for some time. For Slayer, it's now just about money and there's no friendship. Hell Awaits...
    DrCOOL
    Every time I read something with Tom here I hear the same thing. I've never actually liked Kerry, I'm checked out of this and ready to let Slayer rest.
    ewolf5150
    was never a huge slayer fan, and none of my metal friends listen to them either. I never understood the big deal about them, but i did enjoy a few songs and south of heaven. i respect what they did for metal, and saw them live once and it was beyond boring. i could honestly care less if they end, and at this point, they should just call it quits. im sick of hearing this soap opera shit. make a decision and be done with it
    guy_mtx
    Do we have to have a different article every few days about Tom expressing doubt on Slayer's future? We get it.
    Chronologo
    It's pretty sad, I've never been a hardcore fan of Slayer but it feels like Kerry was never a friend of anyone in the band.
    Marcus 90
    As much as i loved this band over the years, Slayer is dead, they should really just call it quit's. there is no real sense of unity anymore in this band, Kerry, the ****ing dickhead that he is,. Is just gonna bring the band down and down
    EpsilonX
    So Dave feels like he's being screwed out of payment for all of his hard work, and wants to try to discuss it. Kerry is just like "nope" and kicks him off the tour without even trying to discuss it. Meanwhile, Araya says he tried to be Dave's friend about it, but sided with King, who his relationship with is only at the business level. Sounds like Araya is only in it for the money.
    GMPX
    After 30 years you really think its about the music still?
    EpsilonX
    Of course not, but it's not even about friends or having fun anymore. 100% a business. If all bands are like that in the music industry, they at least put up an illusion that it's not.
    tonello
    I think it's sad, but its also good in a way. King and Araya are admitting that they don't work well together, and they need to realize that Slayer cannot function without every piece working well together.
    java8
    How can business partners make good music? I think there will be more differences in opinions and slayer will finally end.
    skynyrd
    It seems like all of the joy of being in Slayer is out the window for these guys. I saw them in 2006 on my birthday with Lamb of God, Children of Bodom, & In Flames and it was one of the most epic shows of my life. We eventually snuck backstage and hung out with the guys from LOG and saw Kerry in the hallway. Didn't seem like a friendly fellow. Starting to think they should just call it a day if it's just a business now and they're not having fun with it.
    ForgottenIdiot
    I understand where they're coming from, and it's pretty tough. BUT, you have to move on and continue what you love. And calling your band-mate just a business partner after so many years is almost the exact opposite.
    rmp0012002
    So Dave is an ******* according to Tom and thrown out of the band for doing it as a business but now Araya says everything is just business and all is fine. Tom sounds more like a pussy every day as someone who won't stand up to Kerry. Tom needs to retire as he sounds like someone being bullied and told what to say.
    shauns1810
    Fucking cut the shit boys, play on or call it a day; your actually managing to ruin Slayer.
    Blooddrunk_Moon
    Please disband. They are simply using "Slayer" as a money-making tool. That's a real disgrace! The band should be left as a legend...
    Doomzdayxx
    This is very sad to hear. They need to hang the name up and call it a day. We're all grateful for what they gave us back in the day, but no Jeff, no Dave. Band member talk through lawyers...this is no longer Slayer.
    qrEE
    Ok, here's the plan for Slayer that would work out for everyone - lose everybody but Gary Holt. Hire Rob Dukes, Tom Hunting, Lee Altus, and Jack Gibson. Change name to Exodus. Release new albums under this name.
    SonOfAnarchy
    All hate aside, I kinda wanna hear Slayer do a studio cover of "Strike of The Beast" and put it as a bonus track on the new record.
    Wylde@Heart
    Yeah, I'm curious as to what Tom's vocals would sound like on a number of Exodus tracks, including songs like Bonded By Blood, and War is my Shepherd. Paul Bostaph has already played with Exodus, so, it's not like he needs to learn the songs from scratch anyway, haha.
    ETID666
    This sucks man I want them to keep playing live shows but I don't think its gonna work or be the same anymore
    GMPX
    After 30 years I am not surprised they view Slayer as a business rather than some mates playing in a band. I would bet the day they call it quits that will be it for Tom and Kerry, a few guest spots here and there but they'll be retired.
    satanist39
    I feel band for having to say this, but they just need to stop.Kerry releases an ******* statement here then Tom releases a negative look into the band there. I just do not understand why they should continue.
    cfhdomination
    Kerry will keep riding the Slayer cash cow until the day he can't play anymore. Being a Slayer fan, it bugs the crap out of me, as I'm sure many others feel the same way. What sucks the most at this point is that he won't write with anyone. Araya and Hanneman wrote some classics together. I don't see why Kerry can't just swallow his pride and work out some songs with Tom. Seems like he wants full control of the Slayer brand. He and Geoff Tate would make the best of friends.
    daniel.gibran.5
    i think that Kerry should kick out the rest of the band and make albums with a more talented lineup as these losers are holding him back musically.....getting rid of these no-talents will open up new opportunities musically and Slayer could finally be something more than a 1 trick pony... my ideal lineup: kerry king (rhythm, no solos); slash (rhythm and lead); pete wentz (bass); mike portnoy (drums); billy joe armstrong (vocals/piano) my God this lineup can rule the f* ing world!
    EnslaveTheWorld
    You really need to figure out when and when not to use italic.Also, it could be cool if the article gave any indication as to what Exodus tune they're playing. Not a lot of research and indeed time in general went into writing this 'article'.
    twiggy3634
    You really need to figure out that you need to put a space in between a period and the next word (italic.Also). I love when grammar nazis screw up.
    Gary.Blizzard
    If you are confused with the paragraph that is completely italicized, it is because it holds quotes within a quote. That actually threw me off track for a moment as well.
    BwareDWare94
    Tom Araya: "We're just business partners. Kerry didn't write any of the important stuff early on, and yet his ego grew the biggest of all of us. That really bothered me."
    Cazman
    To me it looks like that they realize all this shit they are spewing recently keeps them in the news, so it's probably not gonna end soon.