KERRY KING: “My new band will be the “extension” of SLAYER!”

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SLAYER’s Kerry King revealed that the upcoming debut album from his solo project has been done since June of 2023. Regarding the musical direction of his solo material, the 59-year-old musician said:

“If I was ever to try anything different from SLAYER, I guess that would be the time. But no, I really have no desire to do anything different. If I wasn’t in SLAYER, I would be a SLAYER fan. So yes, I think it’s an extension of SLAYER, and I think a lot of people will think it might have been the next record. I guess maybe 80% of it would have been, maybe it would have been exactly what I’m putting on this one. In my eyes, I think it’s a definite extension, a follow-up to SLAYER’s 2015 final album “Repentless” for sure.”

He continued:

“There’s definitely some fast stuff on it. It’s not the fastest thing I’ve ever done, but I’ve done some pretty fast stuff. There’s definitely some Herculean speeds getting achieved on this, but there’s heavy stuff. There’s punky stuff. There’s doomy stuff. Pretty much any aspect of any kind of music we’ve done in our history, I think you’ll find on this record.”

Kerry added:

“For me, the slowest song “Repentless” is similar in vibe to “When The Stillness Comes”. That one came out really cool and spooky. And then there was one where my entire intention was to write something like the SCORPIONS’ “Animal Magnetism” crossed with the chug of “Hell Awaits”. That one came together pretty early. I like that song a lot. I mean, I like all of them a lot, but that one, that one’s got a different vibe for sure.”

Kerry King did not name the rest of the musicians who appear on his upcoming LP, but he did say that:
“It is my intention that everybody that’s on the record is going to be in the band, hopefully for its entirety.”

More than three years ago, SLAYER drummer, Paul Bostaph, revealed that he is involved in Kerry’s new project. Paul told Australia’s Riff Crew:

“The new band will sound like SLAYER without it being SLAYER but not intentionally so. I mean, Kerry’s been writing songs in SLAYER his entire career, and he has a style and that style, as a songwriter, you just don’t change your style because your band is done… So, all I can say is if you like heavy music and you like SLAYER, you’ll like this”

Kerry’s new band, called simply KERRY KING, has announced two U.S. shows so far: May 9, 2024 at the Welcome To Rockville festival at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida, and May 16, 2024 at the Sonic Temple Art & Music Festival at the Historic Crew Stadium in Columbus, Ohio.

More than a year ago, Kerry King said that he was angry over the prospect of SLAYER calling it quits when the subject was first broached. Asked in an interview with Metal Hammer magazine for his reaction when the conversation to end the band arose, the guitarist said:

“Anger… what else? 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.”

In the same interview, Kerry King also hinted that SLAYER fans will be happy with the musical direction of his yet-to-be-announced new band.
Two years after he revealed that he had more than two records worth of music written for his new band, Kerry King stated about the new material’s direction:
“You know me, so you know what it’s going to sound like. I played this new song for a buddy, and I said to him, ‘If there’s anything I’ve written in the last few years that sounds like SLAYER, it’s this.’ And he said, ‘That sounds like you could have pulled it off of any SLAYER record.’ I actually made that riff up backstage at a SLAYER show. We were walking to the stage and I got my phone out and recorded it so I wouldn’t forget it.”

King went on to say that he expects his new band to start out by playing “much smaller” venues than SLAYER did at the end of its four-decade run. He said:
“Had it have been up to me then I’d have been out in 2020, but that thing called the pandemic fucked everything up for everyone. You know, I waited on that, because it had to run its course. I didn’t want to be the guinea pig; I didn’t want to learn how to tour again. I already did my dues; I don’t want to have to prove myself again. Have I been dragging my feet? Yeah, because I wanted this pandemic shit to get sorted. I won’t be dragging my feet much longer.”

One day after SLAYER played the final show of its farewell tour in November 2019 in Los Angeles, Kerry’s wife Ayesha King said that there is not a chance in hell that the thrash metal icons will reunite for more live appearances. In August 2020, she once again shot down the possibility of her husband and bassist/vocalist Tom Araya sharing the stage ever again under the SLAYER banner.

After Ayesha shared three photos of Kerry holding their cat in slideshow-type Instagram post, a fan wrote:

No Tom, No SLAYER Kerry. Stop thinking SLAYER without Tom Araya”.
Ayesha then replied: “Don’t worry, they’ll never be SLAYER again! You can rest easy”.

Just a few days earlier, Kerry told Dean Guitars that he had plenty of musical ideas for his upcoming project:

“I’ve been very, very lucky with riffs in 2020. Maybe because I can’t go anywhere, I don’t know, but riffs have certainly not been a problem. And looking forward into the future, what that means for me is I’m gonna be able to cherrypick the best stuff. And it’s good stuff. I’ve got more than two records’ worth of music, but to be able to go through that and cherrypick the best 11 or 12 songs… That first record should be smoking.”

When SLAYER first announced that it was embarking on its final tour back in January 2018, Ayesha assured fans that they would always get music from her husband.

Kerry King has said in previous interviews that his post-SLAYER musical efforts would not be much different from the sound fans have grown accustomed to hearing from him. He told back in 2010:

“If someone quit, I’m not going to go around with a made-up SLAYER but my next band would sound like SLAYER, that’s all I know.”

SLAYER’s final world tour began on May 10, 2018 with the band’s intention to play as many places as possible, to make it easy for the fans to see one last SLAYER show and say goodbye. By the time the 18-month trek wrapped at the Forum, the band had completed seven tour legs plus a series of one-off major summer festivals, performing more than 140 shows in 30 countries and 40 U.S. states.

Source: Metal Hammer England,

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