Enlarge "My heroes from my childhood are still playing! I can still play, I still want to play."

Kerry King Was Pissed When Slayer Hung It Up


It’s been three years since Slayer rode off into the sunset, leaving countless thrash metal fans with one less “Big Four” band in the mix. And while Gary Holt is back with Exodus, the rest of Slayer’s pretty much not had a lot of the spotlight lately. And for guitarist Kerry King, the silence is maddeningly deafening.

In an exclusive interview with the folks over at Metal Hammer, King vented some of his frustrations. When it came to the end of Slayer, he said in no uncertain terms that he felt “anger” over it. After all, he said, the band had way more left in the tank when they played their last show in Los Angeles on November 30, 2019.

“It was premature. The reason I say ‘premature’ is because my heroes from my childhood are still playing! I can still play, I still want to play, but that livelihood got taken away from me. 

“But, anyway, on to the next chapter, I guess. We were on top of the world, and there’s nothing wrong with going out on top of the world, it’s a good way to go out. So, bravo for that. But do I miss playing? Yeah, absolutely.”

While the end of an era seemed too early for King, he also complained that the end of Slayer meant losing touch with so many people around the world. With Slayer being an internationally lauded act, the band naturally went all over the place, gathering friends and fans wherever they went. That lack of connection, King said, was a “bummer.”

“Every one of those shows was a bummer! We were going to all these places and all these cities where we have all this history. It’s a bummer to think, ‘I’m not gonna see my friends there again.’ You’d get to that country and know you were going to see these people, and you’d see them yearly. I haven’t seen them now in three years. That sucks. And the fans, too. Slayer means a lot to our fans, and they mean a lot to us. I know I will see these people again, but no Slayer leaves a big hole for a lot of people.”

When you’ve done something as long as King and they rest of Slayer had done it, it’s gotta be hard to have it come to an end — especially when you think it was too soon. If you want to read more about King’s perspective on the end of Slayer, as well as get some hints about his upcoming unnamed solo work, be sure to pick up the new issue of Metal Hammer.

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