In a recent interview with Revolver, Lombardo opened up about why not being a part of Slayer’s final 2018 and 2019 shows didn’t bother him:
“I was already doing so much… I’d known for years that Tom (Araya) wanted to retire, so it was no surprise. During the later years—I left in ’13, so maybe around 2009 or 2010—Kerry (King) and I were thinking about putting together another band. It might have been at Hellfest when Kerry and I said, ‘Hey, let’s go see Exodus.’ We walked to one of the other stages, and we saw Gary Holt play. I said, ‘Dude, that guy’s a badass.’ And Kerry was, like, ‘Yeah, that’s who we need to recruit for this new project.’ And again, at that time, we knew Tom wanted to stop. He was tired. And then the whole Jeff Hanneman thing went down and the first person that crossed our minds was Gary Holt.”
He added that in addition to the desire to move on with more musical projects, he didn’t want to have to worry about living up to the hype:
“I don’t even go down that path. I don’t see it ever happening. If they ever do decide to come back, they’re going to piss off a lot of fans because, man, they really hyped that farewell tour. They’re going to have to be very careful on how they approach that. But who cares? The fans will be happy regardless. So, I don’t even think about that.”
Lombardo certainly has had enough to keep him busy in recent years between his work with Suicidal Tendencies, Misfits, Dead Cross, and Mr. Bungle. If Slayer ever does make an original-lineup comeback fans will likely be rabid, but at this point, it doesn’t seem likely to happen.
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