Slayer’s Tom Araya recently sat for an interview in which he admitted that he doesn’t know what the future holds for the band following guitarist Jeff Hanneman’s death.
The interview was conducted with New Jersey’s Steppin’ Out magazine and focused on the band’s current tour and Hanneman’s death. The tour was scheduled before the Slayer guitarist’s death and the band has continued with the plan, including doing press. Araya said that the first two weeks of touring were especially tough, but he and guitarist Kerry King have been working through it.
His death has changed everything. Knowing that Jeff was on the sidelines, I was OK. It was always about, “Jeff is going to come back.” Then he passed away and it was more like, “Why am I doing this now?” It changed my attitude about some things. Someone said, “It’s really great that you decided to tour and move on,” but these tours were scheduled in advance. At the end of this tour, Kerry and I are going to have to sit down and talk as far as how we want to move forward, if we want to move forward. There hasn’t been time for me and Kerry to talk. We’ve been on the road but we haven’t really sat down and talked about it. Jeff and I collaborated a lot, and he offered me the opportunity to write or to collaborate with him. Like I said, there are things we have to discuss to either move forward or just to figure something out.
It’s been a tough year for Slayer – first they had to deal with the departure of drummer Dave Lombardo, then Hanneman’s death hit them somewhat unexpectedly. To add insult to injury, the Westboro Baptist Church decided to protest at his funeral.