photo: Stephanie Cabral

Until the death of Slayer guitarist Jeff Hanneman shocked the metal community earlier this month, the biggest story with the band was who would fill their drum seat after Dave Lombardo’s departure. And as the band came to grips with the loss of a founding member, would they realize how important keeping surviving members of the band was? Actually, Slayer have gone back to the past to fill the throne, as they’ve announced that Paul Bostaph is back in the fold for their tour beginning Tuesday (4) in Warsaw, Poland.

Paul’s a great drummer and a good friend, and we’re very happy that he’s decided to rejoin the band,” said Tom Araya. “We’re still pretty numb from the loss of Jeff, but we don’t want to disappoint our European and South American fans, and we need to begin moving forward… Having Paul back in the band makes that a whole lot easier.”

“I’m very excited to be rejoining Slayer,” added Bostaph. “We spent a very intense ten years of our lives together, had a lot of fun, made a lot of great music, so for me, this feels like coming home.”

Bostaph was in the band for nine years, from 1992-2001, playing on Divine InterventionUndisputed AttitudeDiabolus In Musica and God Hates Us All. He also spent two years in Exodus, meaning that he’ll be playing with Gary Holt for the second time. Ironically, this is the second time Bostaph has replaced drummer Jon Dette. He’d been in the band in  for a year  in 1996, and had played some Austrian shows with the band earlier this year after Lombardo was let go from the band.

At least the band will be back with someone they’ve played with before. Slayer is a business, and while there are many that rightfully feel that Slayer isn’t Slayer without the drummer that played on their ‘holy trinity’ of albums, Bostaph has proven himself in the band twice before. Better him than an unproven entity.