Well, that’s a sadly prophetic choice of words. On May 1, just one day before Slayer guitarist Jeff Hanneman died in a hospital of liver failure, the band’s estranged drummer, Dave Lombardo, was interviewed for an Israeli radio station, KZRadio. In a live interview, Lombardo was asked about his exit from the group and his future in the band. He said the following:
“I hope things work out. I hope everything works out for the fans; that’s what I want. And for the history of the band. When we get older and we can’t play anymore, I want the band to go out being still Slayer. ‘Cause we’re all still alive. Can you imagine if one of us was dead? Then it’s hard. It’s like Led Zeppelin. You know, Led Zeppelin with Jason Bonham is not the same; it’s not the same. I hear double pedal in Jason Bonham and it’s, like, ‘Why are you doing that?’ Zeppelin is about single bass, you know.”
Wow. It’s obviously just a weird coincidence that Lombardo said that. It’s pretty apparent that no one knew how close to death Hanneman was. Lombardo certainly wouldn’t have spoken up, even though he probably hasn’t known the day-to-day goings-on of Slayer since he left that band. But Slayer’s manager, Rick Sales, was in New York on April 30 at the Bullet For my Valentine show (a band he co-manages), and it’s hard to imagine he’d have traveled across the country if he’d known Hanneman was ill. It’s really just an unfortunate turn of phrase for Lombardo. Who knows what will happen with Slayer now. The band could very conceivably soldier on with Holt as the permanent fill-in guitarist whether Lombardo is in the band or not. But it’s apparent that May 2 changed the fabric of the band forever.