Slayer Drummer Dave Lombardo Issues Statement After Being Kicked Off Band's Australian Tour

Slayer drummer Dave Lombardo revealed on Thursday that he will not be taking place in the band's upcoming Australian tour. Lombardo issued the following statement on the matter:

"I want to personally apologize to all of our fans in Australia who have bought tickets for the tour expecting to see me in my usual place on the drums.

"So that you all know the truth, as of the end of the business day on February 14th, I was notified that I would not be drumming for the tour in Australia. I'm saddened, and to be honest I am shocked by the situation.

"Last year, I discovered 90% of SLAYER's tour income was being deducted as expenses, including the professional fees paid to management, costing the band millions of dollars and leaving 10% or less to split amongst the four of us. In my opinion, this is not the way a band's business should operate. I tried rectifying it by letting my bandmates know, and Tom [Araya, bass/vocals] and I hired auditors to figure out what happened, but I was denied access to detailed information and the necessary backup documents.

"I spent the Christmas and New Year holidays realizing I had toured all over the world in 2012, but yet had not been paid (except a small advance) or provided a proper accounting for a full year's sweat and blood. On top of this, I was told that I would not be paid until I signed a longform contract which gave me no written assurance of how much or on what basis management would deduct commissions, nor did it provide me access to the financial budgets or records for review. It also forbade me to do interviews or make statements having to do with the band, in effect a gagging order.

"Last Monday, I sat down with Kerry [King, guitar] and Tom to rehearse for Australia and to propose a new business model that I felt was the best way forward for SLAYER to confidently protect itself so we could do what we do best . . . play for the fans. Kerry made it clear he wasn't interested in making changes and said if I wanted to argue the point, he would find another drummer. On Thursday, I arrived at rehearsals at 1 p.m. as scheduled, but Kerry did not show. Rather, at 6:24 p.m. I received an email from the lawyers saying I was being replaced for the Australian dates.

"I remain hopeful that we can resolve our issues. But once again, I sincerely apologize to all of our fans in Australia who spent their money expecting to see the three of us original SLAYER members. I look forward to seeing you in the future."

Lombardo previously left Slayer during the tour for 1986's "Reign In Blood", citing financial issues with the band. He would return to the Slayer one year later.

In 1992, Lombardo once again left Slayer due to growing friction with guitarist Kerry King. Lombardo was replaced by Forbidden drummer Paul Bostaph for nearly ten years, until the former returned in 2001, remaining with the band since.

Guitarist Jeff Hanneman will also be absent during Slayer's upcoming Australian tour, as he is still recovering from necrotising fasciitis — a flesh-eating disease thought to be caused by a spider bite. Exodus guitarist Gary Holt will replace Hanneman on the upcoming tour. 

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