Tom Araya Says Slayer Hasn't Decided on Band's Future After Jeff Hanneman's Passing
Posted by Jeremy Thomas on 11.01.2013
They want to finish their tour first...
Slayer bassist Tom Araya recently spoke with Billboard about the band's future following the passing of Jeff Hanneman earlier this year. Check out the highlights:
On not making plans until they finish their tour: "We're at a point where we're obviously going to have to do a lot of communication and figure out where we want to go. There are decisions the two of us need to make as a group. Three weeks after (Hanneman) died we were back on the road; a lot of stuff was put together in advance, so we're meeting our contractual obligations, in a sense. We've never really had an opportunity to really sit down and discuss what we're feeling and where we are and where we want to go. Jeff was a big part of the band; some people are just now realizing that, but I've always known it. So Kerry and I have a lot of thinking to do, a lot of talking to do and we haven't been in a place to do that yet."
On whether the final recordings with Hanneman will be released: "The new record idea was brought up a few years back. I had injured my back and wasn't able to make the recording sessions that they had with Jeff, Kerry and Dave (Lombardo, Slayer's now ex-drummer) and started to putting ideas together for a new album. Now we're basically at a point where, 'What are we gonna do?' with that stuff. And we won't know until we talk."
On their debut LP Show No Mercy reaching its thirtieth anniversary this year, which inspired their tour's old school theme: "It's something (King) never really thought about before I mentioned it. But then he sent me the text and said 'I'm thinking about doing this old school stuff,' and I said, 'Yeah? That'll go well.' And it sounds better now -- you know what I mean? We've got 30 years of practice, so after 30 years of practice, you better sound fuckin' better, right?"
On playing withing Hanneman: "When we started back out, it was hard for, like the first week of the tour. Everything was fine until we would drop the banner; I had a tough time maintaining control at first. I mean, even though he wasn't part of our live performances for the past two years, there was hope. There was always the possibility and chance he'll be coming back -- there was never any doubt he was coming back from my perspective. So when we got the call (that Hanneman had died) it was like, 'Holy shit! It's permanent now.' And still, every now and then I have to remind myself that he's not gonna be back. This is how it is. I have to remind myself that he's not alive anymore. That's hard."