Slayer Reunite After Five Years, Announce Festival Headline Dates

22 February 2024 | 8:45 am | Mary Varvaris

The news arrives after Kerry King recently claimed he could "a hundred per cent say no" to any chance of a Slayer reunion.


Slayer (Source: Supplied)

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Thrash metal titans Slayer have announced their shock reformation after breaking up five years ago, headlining slots for US heavy music festivals Louder Than Life in Louisville, Kentucky and Riot Fest in Chicago this September.

Slayer marked the end of a stunning, nearly four-decade career rocking the socks off fans across the globe with an enormous world tour in 2019 – including headlining Download Festival in Australia in 2019.

Doing away with their retirement plans from the music industry, Slayer – with the same line-up at the time of breaking up – founding members Tom Araya and Kerry King, as well as Exodus guitarist Gary Holt and drummer Paul Bostaph.

The band’s shock reunion was announced this morning. In a statement, Araya remarked about the reformation, “Nothing compares to the 90 minutes when we're on stage playing live, sharing that intense energy with our fans,” via Consequence Of Sound. “And to be honest, we have missed that.”

King added in his own statement, “Have I missed playing live? Absolutely. Slayer means a lot to our fans; they mean a lot to us. It will be five years since we have seen them.”

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Nobody saw Slayer getting back together – especially after King fired at his bandmates in a recent Rolling Stone interview, telling the outlet he could “a hundred per cent say no” to any chance of a reunion.

King then announced the release of his new solo project, releasing his debut album From Hell I Rise this May. He previously called his latest musical outlet “not Slayer, but it sounds like Slayer.”

In addition to those comments, King said that he and Araya hadn’t spoken since the band’s 2019 breakup, claiming that he hadn’t received “not even a text … not even an email.” He added, “If Tom hit me up, I’d probably respond. It probably depends on what he hit me up for, but I don’t wish him dead at this moment.”

We were lucky enough to catch the band headline Download Festival down under in 2019, where we remarked: “Time has not withered Tom Araya's voice, it hasn't slowed down Paul Bostaph's feet or hand work on the kit, nor has the passing of the years affected Kerry King's right-hand-of-god picking technique; chugging out riffs, squealing whammy's and dive-bombs galore along with Gary Holt and his own self-blood-stained signature guitar.”

You can read the rest of the review here.