SLAYER Frontman: 'We're Our Own Worst Critics'

Revolver magazine recently conducted an interview with SLAYER bassist/vocalist Tom Araya. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.

Revolver: At this point, can you guys whip up a SLAYER song pretty easily?

Tom: Oh, no. I mean, we have an idea of what we want the song to sound like; it's making it sound the way we want it to that's hard. And we're our own worst critics. If Jeff [Hanneman, guitar] puts together a song and it, to him, doesn't sound good, then he won't even bother presenting the song. The guys have to like the songs they write before we get to see and hear them. So this time [for the band's recording session in October] he had these three he liked, and we went into the studio with 'em and we knew how we wanted them, the basic idea of the songs, and we needed someone to come in and take charge. It wasn't like we went in there and started playing a bunch of riffs and said, "OK, this sounds good…"

Revolver: It's been 25 years since "Show No Mercy" came out. Any plans to commemorate that anniversary?

Tom: Wow, 25 years since that album, huh? I don't pay too much attention to that kind of stuff — obviously. [Laughs] Y'know, one day someone said, "You guys have been together this many years." "Really? Wow!" We all kind of looked at each other, dumbfounded, and stunned. It's not something where we've ever sat down and said, "We've been together five years, let's have a party! We've been together 10 years, let's have a party!'" or anything like that. Other people do that for us. We kinda let the years go by and go, "Fuck, has it been that long?"

Revolver: What keeps SLAYER together at this point?

Tom: We just… we do what we do, and we're fans of the band. We know what we can get away with and what we can't. Because we're such big fans of what we do, we can step back and say, "Hmm, I wouldn't like that. That wouldn't be cool," and the other guys can go, "Yeah, you're right." Or we can hear something we like and go, "Wow, that's awesome!" That's basically how we look at things. That's how we approach what we do as a band, so it's probably why we've been doing what we do as long as we have. It's just natural.

The entire interview can be found in the February 2009 "Mega Preview 2009" issue of Revolver magazine, available on newsstands now.

Multi-camera video footage of SLAYER performing the new song "Psychopathy Red" at the B1 Maximum club in Moscow, Russia on November 29, 2008 can be viewed below. Also included is backstage footage from the Moscow concert.


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