TESTAMENT's ERIC PETERSON Says Fan Response To SLAYER's Final Tour Was 'Incredible To See'

TESTAMENT's ERIC PETERSON Says Fan Response To SLAYER's Final Tour Was 'Incredible To See'

In a new interview with Ireland's Overdrive, TESTAMENT guitarist Eric Peterson looked back on SLAYER's decision to retire after a 35-year run. Asked if he thinks SLAYER calling it quits was "like a shot in the arm for the thrash scene, especially with older audiences," Eric responded: "Oh yeah. Totally. Before that, SLAYER was playing the bigger halls like two nights at the Warfield [in San Francisco] and then to come back to play outdoor sheds for like 20,000 people. That was just amazing to see. We went out with them for two runs [as part of the final tour], and it was just incredible.

"In one sense, it was so great to see the numbers at the shows but in another sense, it was kind of sad that it took that long in their career… for them to say, 'Hey, this is gonna be the last time we're doing this,' before people took notice, if you know what I mean," he explained. "SLAYER should have always been playing venues of that size. But still, it was monumental and it was incredible to see. Those guys totally deserve it."

Two years ago, TESTAMENT frontman Chuck Billy told "Met Al Metal" that he was "sad" to see SLAYER go after such a long and influential career. "It's a sad feeling, but, you know, that's the decision they've made after 37 years," he said. "They've been doing it for such a long time, it takes a lot to probably make that decision. I don't know if it's like any other band that's called it quits and then comes back five years later and plays again. I don't know."

TESTAMENT guitarist Alex Skolnick told "The Rock Writer's Ramble" back in 2018 that SLAYER bassist/vocalist Tom Araya was looking forward to spending more time at home with his family. "He's gotten to a point where he doesn't wanna do it forever — at least not at the level that SLAYER is going, where they do a record, they do a record cycle, which, for them, is very intense…" Alex said. "But I think now that it's a finite time period, he's really appreciative — he's smiling all the time. And that's also who he is offstage.

"It's so funny, 'cause the name SLAYER, it's like the notorious name that brings to mind Dante's Inferno, but offstage, [Tom is] just this very mellow, easygoing guy, who's just very funny," Alex continued. "And you're seeing more of that onstage this time. But I think it has a lot to do with the fact that, yes, he's ready to wrap it up. And I don't know if that means they'll never do it again, but I think as far as the album after album, followed by a long album cycle, you're not gonna see that. They're also young enough, so if they decided to do a one-off in a few years, as a special occasion, then it's fine."

TESTAMENT's new album, "Titans Of Creation", will be released on April 3 via Nuclear Blast. The long-awaited follow-up to 2016 album "Brotherhood Of The Snake" was produced by singer Chuck Billy and guitarist Eric Peterson while Juan Urteaga of Trident Studios handled co-producing, recording and engineering. Andy Sneap was responsible for the mixing and mastering of the album. Eliran Kantor stepped up once again to create a new masterpiece of artwork for the cover of this release.

TESTAMENT recently teamed up with EXODUS and DEATH ANGEL for "The Bay Strikes Back 2020" European tour.

SLAYER played its final concert on November 30, 2019 at the Forum in Los Angeles.

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