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Slayer does not preach: Tom Araya

Ahead of their debut gig in India, the thrash metal band’s frontman Tom Araya says that their songs may be controversial, but they don’t sermonise.

music Updated: Oct 06, 2012 15:15 IST
Akhila Shankar
Akhila Shankar
Hindustan Times
Slayer,Vladivar Rock’N India,thrash metal bands

With well over 10 metal acts slated to play in India in this quarter of the year, Slayer is possibly one of the most influential thrash metal bands of the lot. The two time Grammy Award winners are scheduled to headline Vladivar Rock’N India on October 20 in Bengaluru. Firebrand band The outfit’s 30-year career has been ridden with controversies due to their explicit political and communalist lyrical content. Frontman Tom Araya elucidates, “Kerry (King, lead and rhythm guitarist) writes all the anti-religious songs. He considers himself an atheist; Slayer as a band does not preach.”

The band’s debut performance will not feature founding member and rhythm/lead guitarist Jeff Hannemen, who is yet to recover from necrotising fasciitis (a flesh-eating disease) that he contracted from a spider bite in 2011. Gary Holt of Exodus fame, who has been the band’s touring lead guitarist while Hannemen has been away, will substitute for him at this gig too. “Jeff is recovering. At the moment he is creating new material. We are working towards a 2013 release,” said Araya. India special Metalheads can look forward to a special treat at the gig. “We are putting together a list from the Slayer catalogue to bring old and new hits to the fans in India,” says Araya.

City-based metal act Brahma will open for Slayer. The second opening act will be selected on the basis of a contest where bands will be shortlisted through an online public voting and the top five contenders will then compete for a slot at the concert.

In the past, Rock ’N India, has brought down artistes like Metallica, Megadeth, Machine Head, Iron Maiden, Biffy Clyro and Backstreet Boys. With Megadeth scheduled to play in Delhi on October 14, Indian metal fans would have seen three of the Big 4 (Metallica, Megadeath, Slayer and Anthrax) within a span of one year.

First Published: Oct 06, 2012 13:18 IST