It's a big day in Kerry King's world as his new solo project is finally unveiled. Though during his interview with Rolling Stone about the project, King touched on the final Slayer shows in 2019 and his relationship with frontman Tom Araya. Or a lackthereof, anyway.
When asked if he's spoken to Araya at all since the last show, King said "Not even a text. Not even an email. I've talked to everybody else from the band on the phone, text, or email. 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."
King then touched on Araya posting pro-Trump content to Slayer's Instagram, saying he and the rest of the band were "super pissed off at that." He later notes that he and Araya are simply very different people, adding "Am I going to hang out with Tom? He likes tequila a little bit and I'm a big tequila-head, so I'll have my shot with him, and we'll part ways. We're not going to hang out or anything because we are very different people. And together, we made great music and a great live show."
King said he wasn't expecting Araya to say he was done with the band either, but notes that he wasn't going to try and talk Araya out of it. "We were on tour and some kid was interviewing him, and he said something about, 'I've got to get together with Kerry and talk before we talk about the next record.' He should have just said, 'I'm probably not going to do another record,' or had that conversation with me before he mentioned anything like that.
"I was just assuming, 'Oh fuck, what's this going to be?' And it was, 'I'm done.' Not what I expected. But if you made that decision, I'm not going to try to talk you out of it because your heart's not going to be in it anyway."
King also talked a little about founding Slayer drummer Dave Lombardo, who played with the band on and off between 1981 and 2013. King made his feelings about Lombardo extremely clear, saying "Lombardo is dead to me" before adding. "He went on that tirade [on social media regarding Slayer's business] when we were on a flight to Australia, and he knew we couldn't retort for 14 hours, and he threw me under the bus. I was the only one keeping him in the band. Tom wanted him out before that, and Jeff had just gotten the spider bite [causing him to contract a flesh-eating bacteria, forcing him off the road], so he wasn't playing with us much. I said, 'We need [Dave]. The fans won't get it if we replace him right now.'
"And then the Australia thing came up. He threw me under the bus, and I'm like, 'I'm the guy that kept you here.' So I thought, 'Fuck that guy.'"