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Band Photo: Slayer (?)

Formed: 1982
From: Huntington Beach, CA, United States
Last Known Status: Active


The thrash metal sound of Slayer was formed in Huntington Beach, CA in 1982. Comprising Tom Araya (bass, vocals), Kerry King (guitar), Jeff Hanneman (guitar) and Dave Lombardo (drums), they made their debut in 1983, with a track on the compilation Metal Massacre III. After that the rest has been history. The band played at breakneck speed with amazing technical precision, but the intricacies of detail were lost in a muddy production. Araya's lyrics dealt with death, carnage, Satanism and torture, but were reduced to an indecipherable guttural howl. But this chaos called music is what set the ways for Slayer and many bands to follow.

Through the years, Slayer has been hit with much controversy over their lyrics, including lawsuits. But through the years Slayer has managed to build a following from coast to coast. Slayer has played such tours as Monsters of Rock, Ozzfest, and recently toured the U.S. co-headling with Pantera.

Now almost 20 years later, Slayer is still playing just as hard as ever. Will Slayer ever stop? Not likely, considering they are keeping up with thrash bands half their age, after all they did start it!

Latest Slayer News

Below is our complete Slayer news coverage, including columns and articles pertaining to the band. Some articles listed may be indirectly related, such as side projects of the band members, etc.

Note: We began associating news directly with bands in late 2003. Therefore, earlier band news may not be listed on this page.

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Slayer Guitarist Speaks To KNAC.com

Long time Slayer guitarist Jeff Hanneman spoke to KNAC.com recently about his start in Slayer, his musical influences, the band's forthcoming DVD, songwriting and a lot more. Here are a few excerpts from the interview:

KNAC.COM: "You don’t do many interviews, so why don’t we start from the beginning. What brought you into Slayer? What tied you in at the beginning?"

HANNEMAN: "Kerry and I met-- I was hanging out with some friends who played… I don’t know what kind of music it was… more like Robin Trower? Bluesy kind of music; and Kerry for some reason was trying out for that band. Me and Kerry got to talking, and he and I picked up a guitar and we started playing with a drummer after the tryout session was over. We were playing Priest and Maiden songs with a drummer, and so Kerry and I started talking after that and Kerry was like, "Why don’t we start our OWN band?" [Laughs] and I was like, "...Fuck yeah!" [Laughs] Eventually—Dave [Lombardo] lived down the street from Kerry, and approached Kerry because he heard that he had guitars, then next thing you know Dave was in the band. Then Kerry said that he'd played in another band with this singer named Tom [Araya], and soon he was in the band. The rest is history."

KNAC.COM: "So as far as the new album, I read that you’re not actually going in until around January because Rubin has changed distributors again."

HANNEMAN: "Once again. So instead of getting the album done and waiting, having it sit on a shelf, fuckin' we’ll just go tour."

Read the full article at KNAC.com.

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Slayer Guitarist Talks About DVD & Album

Slayer guitarist Jeff Hanneman spoke to RiftRock.com about the band's upcoming DVD, "Reign In Blood Live: Still Reigning," and their next studio album. Here are some excerpts from the interview:

Riftrock.com: "The band is putting out yet another live DVD soon that features the album Reign In Blood played in it’s entirety with the original line up. What inspired you guys to film "Reign In Blood Live: Still Reigning"? When and how did the idea come about?"

Jeff Hanneman: "The DVD idea was just recent, but the idea to play "Reigning Blood" in its entirety, we've talked about that for years, because i'ts only 28 minutes, we thought it would be cool to just throw it in a set, but it really caught fire when Dave got back in the band so it was like "Dave's back in the band? We should do it" And since the record label and Rick Rubin were having some problems, he suggested we wait until next year, so we said fuck it lets record raining blood live with Dave Lombardo and put it on DVD."

Riftrock.com: "The band is said to be working on material for a new album. How many songs have you written so far for the album?"

Jeff Hanneman: "We've got at least 10 songs musically because we always write material first, I have a handful and Kerry does too, but we haven't gotten into writing lyrics yet. We have plenty of songs to record when we are done touring, the album should be out pretty quick."

Riftrock.com: "Has Dave Lombardo re-entering the fold had any influence on the new material?"

Jeff Hanneman: "Oh yeah, anytime you have a drummer like Dave that's an amazing drummer, he's always a big influence, he'll tell us where we should have a pause, where we should stop at parts."

Riftrock.com: "Will Kerry be handling all lyrics for this album as well?"

Jeff Hanneman: "Oh yeah, well, me Kerry and Tom write all the lyrics. We all have our phases where we get on a roll and we just conquer everything."

Read the full article at RiftRock.com.

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Slayer Bassist Speaks To The Tucson Citizen

Slayer vocalist/bassist Tom Araya spoke to the Tucson Citizen about their show on July 11 in Augusta, Maine, which was recorded for an upcoming live DVD. The band played "Reign In Blood" in its entirety, however, was focused on just the final minute of "Raining Blood," the closing song on the 10-track record.

"It's kind of like little kids waiting for a new toy. 'Here it comes. Here it comes,' " singer Tom Araya says, laughing. "The effect we were trying to achieve only happens at the end of the album, the last minute .... And when it happened, it was great."

For all those Slayer fans who were unable to make it to Agusta to witness the original lineup of the band - drummer Dave Lombardo rejoined in 2003 - performing its influential speed metal treatise, fear not: The show was filmed, and it will be in the "Reign in Blood: Still Reigning" DVD, scheduled to be released on September 28.

"Reign in Blood" was Slayer's third album and the first produced by Rick Rubin for his Def Jam label. Araya wants Rubin to produce Slayer's next album, which he hopes will see the band in the studio by the end of the year.

"If not Rubin, someone like Rubin, who will work like Rubin. In other words, who will be a part of the process," Araya says, adding that Rubin is very hands-on and acts, necessarily, like a "referee" for Slayer. Rubin was somewhat involved in the band's 2002 album, "God Hates Us All," in terms of financing and suggesting who should do the final mix.

Read the full article at Tuscon Citizen.

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Autographed BC Rich Kerry King For Auction

BC Rich Kerry King Signature Model, autographed by Slayer's guitarist Kerry King. The guitar features include EMG Hz humbuckers, Kerry's tribal graphic, diamond inlays and a Licensed Floyd Rose tremolo system. 100% of this Guitars 4 Kids auction will go directly to the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, TN (www.stjude.org).

To bid go to http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=3737551164

Can only ship in the United States. Cashiers checks or money orders only, payable to: St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital.

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Update On New Slayer CD

Slayer bassist/vocalist Tom Araya has told the Tacoma News Tribune that nine to 10 polished instrumental tracks have been finished for the band's next studio album, with another two that still need work. "The lyrical parts haven't been completed yet. Those might change the attitude or the mood of the songs."

With regards to the new material's musical direction, Araya said, "It sounds like Slayer."

Recording for the new CD was put on hold while legendary producer Rick Rubin began negotiating a new deal with Universal Music Group. Rubin has worked with Slayer since he produced the band's 1986 thrash classic "Reign in Blood", and his status could greatly affect the level of support the UMG subsidiary, American Recordings, gives any new album.

"The minute (Rubin) gets that situated we'll continue the process of finishing the music," Araya said. Meanwhile, the band's DVD, "Reign in Blood Live: Still Reigning," is slated for release Sept. 28.

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Ozzfest Report - July 18 in Bristow, VA

On Sunday, July 18, 2004 I enjoyed one of the best Ozzfests I've witnessed at the Nissan Pavilion in Bristow, Virginia, despite a day that started off pretty bad. To put it all in perspective, I'll start at the beginning. I awoke to prepare for the day and immediately noticed that my right eye which was slightly irritated the day before was swollen half shut. After 30 minutes or so of being awake, I was developing a serious headache from the pressure of my swollen eyelid being open. Although I had fully intended to arrive at Ozzfest by 9:30 and see every band perform, I quickly resigned to going in to the hospital to have my eye checked out. The decision was an easy one because the headache was already terrible and I could only imagine the situation worsening throughout the day as dust, rain, sweat, and/or sun screen got into my eyes.

After two hours in the hospital to get some antibiotic eye drops, I was on my way. One side effect of the eye infection was that I was forced to wear glasses instead of contacts, which totally sucks - it's kind of hard to headbang with glasses on.

Factoring in travel time, I arrived at Ozzfest just two hours into the show. The weather was overcast and comfortably cool 70's. They were calling for a 60% chance of rain, but the weather was holding, despite passing through some rain on the drive to Bristow. More...

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New Slayer DVD Details

Slayer fan site Slayer Saves has posted a review of the group's July 11 show in Augusta, Maine, which was filmed for an upcoming live DVD, entitled "Reign in Blood Live: Still Reigning." The disc will feature a full performance of the 1986 album "Reign in Blood" by all original members of the veteran thrash metal outfit. The DVD, due on September 28, will have an approximate 75-minute running time and will retail for $14.98. An excerpt from the Slayer Saves review follows:

"The band took a short encore pause from 'Angel of Death' to 'Piece by Piece,' same as they did on the Jager tour. Blood rained from the lighting rig upon the beginning of 'Raining Blood' soaking Tom and bloodying Kerry (Jeff avoided the bulk of the blood). The only adverse result of the blood was it killed the sound of Dave's cymbals for the end of the song when once again it poured blood soaking everything including the drums. The effect was quite striking and the crowd was blown away. A blood soaked Tom addressed the cheering crowd with a sneering smile and the words 'We'll see you in HELL.' Comments from people leaving the venue were positive and I think the show was received extremely well. The blood effect was amazing and worth every penny alone."

Set list from the shoot: More...

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Aggressive Music Festival Video Posted Online

Albany's Capital News 9 has posted a two-minute video report from this weekend's Aggressive Music Festival, which featured performances from a number of national heavy metal bands, including Slayer, Slipknot, Killswitch Engage, Chimaira, Superjoint Ritual, Shadows Fall, Hatebreed and Life Of Agony. Watch the video here.

Around 4,000 music fans from the Capital Region and as far away as California packed the Glens Falls Civic Center for the festival, which was organized in part by Hatebreed singer Jamey Jasta. Back in May, a group of local people went around getting residents in the Glens Falls area to sign petitions (watch video here) against the concert due to some of the groups' questionable lyrics. But organizers, bands and fans said there's nothing wrong with this type of music.

Promoter Ted Etoll said, "They took one little isolated lyrical content and made everybody here to look like demons, which they aren't."

Mark Wellington of Queensbury said, "You know a lot of people were shaky about having guys like us come up here and have a festival, but overall it's just fans coming to listen to good music."

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Judas Priest More OffFest Dates Announced

More JUDAS PRIEST OffFest dates have been announced. Here's a summary of shows with confirmed openers:

17 - Chippewa Valley Festival Grounds, Cadott WI (Rock Fest)
26 - Idaho Center, Nampa ID (with Slayer and Hatebreed)
30 - Sleep Train Amphitheatre, Sacramento CA (with Slayer and Black Label Society)

4 - Don Haskins Center, El Paso TX (with Slayer and Black Label Society)
8 - Woodlands Pavilion, Woodlands TX (with Slayer and Black Label Society)
18 - Molson Amphitheatre, Toronto ON (with Slayer)
29 - Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville, CT (with Lacuna Coil)

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Photos Of Ozzfest In New York July 14

Ozzfest 2004 made its way through Wantagh, New York this past Wednesday, July 14 where such bands as Judas Priest, Slayer, Black Label Society and Dimmu Borgir performed at the Jones Beach Amphitheater. Check out the pictures here.

A detailed review of the concert is available at MTV here.

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Ozzfest Report - 12 July in Mansfield, MA

So, after quite some time and many doubts I have finally decided to share my thoughts about this year's Ozzfest. Actually, it's my first time on this festival since I'm from Europe and I've only been living in U.S. for two years now. Please, do consider this as you read along :)

I got to the Tweeter Center around 10:15 in the morning. Being my first time there, I wasn't sure how the whole thing was gonna go. The first thing that looked very weird were all those people on the parking lot who had brought BBQs and coolers and were hanging out by their cars. Very American, I thought. More...

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Sabbath, Priest, Slayer Teach Heavy Metal 101

Jon Wiederhorn recounts Wednesday's Ozzfest at the Jones Beach Amphitheater in an article entitled 'Sabbath, Priest, Slayer Teach Heavy Metal 101 At Ozzfest '04' on VH1.com. Here are some highlights:

When a guy in the next row throws up on the seat in front of him and passes out on it, and when two girls 10 feet away lift their tops and make out, and it all happens before 7 p.m., you know you must be at Ozzfest.

And speaking of Superjoint Ritual singer Phil Anselmo:

The singer repeatedly urged fans to stand up and threatened to beat up anyone who remained seated, and when someone in the crowd shouted out the name of his old band, things got ugly. "Pantera's dead," Anselmo replied. "You can boo all you want, it's a waste of breath."

Read the full article at VH1.com.

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Lots More Ozzfest Setlists

Some setlist info is starting to filter in from bands at this years Ozzfest. Here they are so far:

Bleeding Mascara
Someone's Standing On My Chest
Right Side of The Bed
Lip Gloss and Black

Force Fed
Anti Hero
Better Days
Broken Promise More...

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Slayer's Kerry King: "Dave Mustaine Is A Dictator"

In a brand-new interview with Guitar World magazine, SLAYER's Kerry King spoke about the time he spent in MEGADETH as the band's touring/live guitarist. Asked how he thinks MEGADETH would have turned out if he had stayed in the group, Kerry replied, "I played their first five shows, and if I had stayed I probably wouldn't have lasted more than a year, because [MEGADETH frontman] Dave Mustaine is such a dictator and had much poppier ideas than me. It never would have worked. Jeff [Hanneman, SLAYER guitarist] and I used to go see METALLICA and be blown away by how awesome Mustaine was, so I was honored when the call came asking me to help him. But after five shows, I was like, 'I'm in SLAYER and that ain't going to change." That didn't go over too well."

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Kerry King Comments On New Slayer Material

SLAYER guitarist Kerry King recently spoke to Metal Edge magazine about the songwriting process for the group's long-awaited follow-up to 2001's "God Hates Us All"

"We've got twelve new songs, and we were playing before [drummer] Dave [Lombardo] went back out with FANTOMAS, minimal lyrics, but we got twelve songs that are 90 percent done. We just have to go in and record them. Then we come to find out that [American Records head honcho] Rick Rubin's deal is up again with Universal, and I will lay million-to-one odds he ain't there in two months. So for us to put out a record doesn't make sense right now, because if we put it out on Universal, they would have it for two months and they wouldn't promote it. Then, whichever company would pick it up wouldn't promote it, because it would have been out for two months, so it's just as well. But there might be another DVD with Dave on it, we are talking about that right now."

With regards to whether Dave had a say in the new material, Kerry said, "I mean, when [guitarist] Jeff [Hannemann] brings stuff in, they are on a drum machine, but I still record my riffs the way I did twenty years ago — I just put them on that same jam box, with a Radio Shack mic, because I am too lazy to get into the digital eight-track, and the drum machine. I know it's fun, I know it's easy, but I would rather take a tape down and say, 'Dave, here you go.' He is like, 'Really, I got an idea for that there.' I am like, 'Show me what you got.' I will turn him loose on it, because he might think of something I never did — he is the drummer. If it is just not floating, I will say, 'Well, this is what I had in mind, try this.' One or the other is going to be pretty kick-ass."

Asked what the major difference is between and Dave and former drummer Paul Bostaph's drumming styles, Kerry replied, "Dave definitely brings something else to the puzzle — the way he plays is more rootsy and organic, and he is the guy that could just get up in the morning and play anything. He doesn't have to work at it, he don't got to practice, he is a natural. So he brings things to the table that are so rudimentary, but so cool. You would never think of them because they are so simple. He will bring something up like, 'Why don't we do this?' I will be like, 'Damn, never thought of that…' He is more punky than Bostaph as well. Dave is big-time into the old Southern Cal punk, like all of us are, so it's just a different vibe. I mean, it was good, and 'God Hates Us All', with Bostaph, is probably Bostaph's crowning achievement. The next one, I think, is going to be like 'God Hates Us All', with a twist of 'Seasons [In the Abyss]' mixed in it, because Dave brings something else to the table. It is going to take awhile."

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Killswitch Engage Confirmed For Jager Fall Tour

KILLSWITCH ENGAGE have just been confirmed as direct support for SLAYER on the Fall edition of this years JAGERMUSIC 2004 tour. The tour will kick off October 13th and run through the end of November. Dates, cities, venues, etc. are all TBA.

However, fans will be able to catch the band before October when they kick off a tour with FROM AUTUMN TO ASHES, 18 VISIONS and 36 CRAZYFISTS this August. FROM AUTUMN TO ASHES will be acting as direct support, with 18 VISIONS and labelmates 36 CRAZYFISTS acting as extra billing. 36 CRAZYFISTS will open all shows, and the tour is expected to run from August 13th through September 25th.

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Lacuna Coil And Dimmu Borgir To Do Off-Fest Dates?

According to an interview conducted by Pivotalrage.com with BLEEDING THROUGH's vocalist (Brandon), it seems that DIMMU BORGIR and LACUNA COIL are set to play some Off-fest (dates during Ozzfest when Ozzfest is not being played) dates together this summer. Here's the Q & A:

"PR: Are there going to be any off dates with any other bands from Ozzfest?"

"Brandon: Yeah we will either be doing off dates with SLAYER or DIMMU BORGIR and LACUNA COIL. If it works out our way it will be with SLAYER because we fit more with that crowd then a black metal crowd. But either way it’s going to be crazy."

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Vans Adds Slayer To List Of Band Shoes

The limited-edition SLAYER Old Skools Vans shoes are available now for pre-order at this location. The shoes will be in stock and won't ship out until mid-April but you can pre-order these limited edition Old Skools now to guarantee your pair. Prices range from $50 to $55.

SLAYER are the latest addition to the Vans' band shoe project (LTDs). The SLAYER Old Skools, made to the band's specifications, features an all leather upper, custom SLAYER Eagle heel logo and SLAYER tongue label, black sidestripe and "red splatters" friction. These Old Skools will be available for a limited time only and are available now for pre-order, while supplies last, in both men's sizes and boys' sizes on vans.com.

(FYI: For the ladies who are interested in these shoes, there is a 1.5 size difference between boys'/men's and women's sizes. So if you are a women's 7.5, then you would be a boys 6.0 or a women's size 9 would be a men's 7.5 etc.)

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Download Slayer's San Francisco Jagermeister Show

Slayer Saves has posted online the the entire show (mp3 audio) from San Francisco's Jagermeister 2003 tour stop. You can download it here.

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Slayer, Cradle Of Filth On Download Festival 2004

The 2004 Download Festival is scheduled to take place in Donington, UK on June 5th and 6th, and in Glasgow, Scotland on June 2nd and 3rd.

The latest confirmations come from CRADLE OF FILTH and SLAYER.

The confirmed lineup for the festivals in shaping up to look like this:

June 2nd - Glasgow, Scotland: METALLICA, KORN, SLIPKNOT and H.I.M.




For more info visit the official website of the festival

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