The metal world was shocked when Dave Lombardo announced last week that he would not be participating in Slayer's Australian tour, which is ongoing. For all intents and purposes, Lombardo is currently out of Slayer, and the band has found a temporary replacement in Jon Dette.
Naturally, while on their Australian tour, the band would be asked about what's going on with Lombardo. A new interview with guitarist Kerry King reveals that it's not just him who isn't pleased with Lombardo, but vocalist Tom Araya is also on the fence about Lombardo's participation:
On drummer Dave Lombardo's current status:
Kerry: "This just happened a week ago… ten days ago… so I mean, I don't know… It's unfortunate that Dave couldn't be with us; I planned on him being here up until the Monday before I left. And then I saw trouble in paradise, and since I am the mastermind on making decisions like this, I was, like, 'Alright, I've got a backup plan. Just in case.' 'Cause I would have hated to have just Australia blown out. Can you imagine how shitty that would have been? So I did what I thought was best, and we pulled it off."
On whether he saw the dispute with Dave coming:
Kerry: "Tom did. Tom's been on the fence about Dave for awhile and I was pretty much the one that said, 'Nah, I'm not comfortable moving on [without Dave].' And then it got thrust in our face and I took action immediately and I got a very lucky culmination of things that happened."
I have to say, it's sort of shitty that King throws Araya under the bus here, but ultimately, this is some crazy band drama that needs to be resolved. It doesn't seem like the book is fully closed on Lombardo exiting the band. King made it clear that this was all a very last minute decision. When discussing new material, which King has previously promised to be released this year, the Slayer guitarist seemed indecisive as to whether he should move forward recording the album with or without Lombardo:
"I've been working on the new maerial a lot, and I worked on it a lot with Dave. So I haven't decided — if we move on [without Dave] — I haven't decided if I play the new guy what we've done or just play him the guitar stuff that I made up and say, 'What do you think?' 'Cause I know what I want to be there, and I can tell him if it's going in the wrong direction. 'Nah, you've gotta play this.' I haven't even thought this far yet."
For everybody's sake, I really hope this gets settled when Slayer return to the states.