SLAYER guitarist Kerry King was interviewed on the June 15-17 edition of Full Metal Jackie‘s nationally syndicated radio show. You can now listen to the chat using the audio player below.
To see a full list of stations carrying the program and when it airs, go to FullMetalJackieRadio.com.
Full Metal Jackie: I want to start by bringing up [EXODUS guitarist] Gary Holt, who is filling in for [SLAYER‘s] Jeff Hanneman. Gary‘s band EXODUS goes way back with SLAYER, but how much of a factor was familiarity when it came to bringing him in?
Kerry: Probably more than I’ve ever let on, but I always regard Gary as the Glenn Tipton of our era — really good, really polished and nobody talks about him. To this day, nobody really references [JUDAS] PRIEST and Tipton that much as guitar players and I feel the same way about Gary. EXODUS have a huge following but a little more overlooked than METALLICA, MEGADETH, SLAYER, ANTHRAX — the “Big Four,” so to speak, so to be able to bring him to the forefront and shove him down people’s throats and say, “Hey, this motherfucker kicks ass. Pay attention.”
Full Metal Jackie: Kerry, do you guys reminisce a lot about how long you all been friends and part of this and where the metal scene it today?
Kerry: From time to time. Me and Gary are usually up later on the bus than everybody else — if we’re not watching some crazy horror or comedy or yackin’ about something.
Full Metal Jackie: What aspects of Gary‘s style most affect what you’re doing onstage?
Kerry: Probably not his style as much as… It’s still new for him and every few months or so he’ll say, “Why don’t we play this one? It’d be awesome to play this one.” So we’ll go learn another song that Gary hasn’t played because he wants to make the most of his time here. We pull out “Hell Awaits” from time to time. He’s performed it twice, but I think that’s the most recent one he’s the greenest on.
Full Metal Jackie: From what we’ve heard, you’ve got a lot of new music recorded. We’re definitely looking forward to hearing some new tunes. A lot of SLAYER lyrics deal with serial killers, religious oppression and apocalyptic themes. Are those subjects things you also watch documentaries on or read about on a fairly regular basis.
Kerry: Yeah, I’m a big fan of a great horror movie and they come so few and far between you have a lot of shitty ones that come out but to get really good ones you gotta bide your time and say, “Alright, this is gonna be the one,” you know, History channel, Discovery, all kinds of stuff. If I was making movies, I’d be a horror movie writer, without a doubt.
Full Metal Jackie: What’s the most recent horror film that you saw that you would recommend?
Kerry: When I get put on the spot like this I’m like, “Uh.” [Laughs] I saw “Insidious” a while back. “Insidious” was pretty cool for being a PG-13 film. Historically, I’m not sure horror is the right word, but you can’t go wrong with “Seven”; it’s just awesome.
Full Metal Jackie: Is it story or is it gore that gets you when it comes to a horror film?
Kerry: Well, something like “Seven”, it was complete — getting your mind around what’s goin’ on, so it was the intensity of the story to where something like “Devil’s Advocate”, you’re into the evilness of it. It’s different things, I guess “Seven” is almost crime drama, but it’s really fuckin’ dark.
Full Metal Jackie: Are there any bands that you’ve never seen before that you’re looking forward to maybe checking out this summer [on the Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival]?
Kerry: You know, we’re never there that early, we get in probably around the time ANTHRAX plays ’cause I know I got a lot of stuff going on with Jägermeister at every show this summer. I’ve seen ANTHRAX a million times, I’ve seen SLIPKNOT a million times, but if I’m there for ANTHRAX, I’ll be up there supporting them and when we get done playing — as soon as I get changed out of my sweaty leathers, I’ll be up there watchin’ SLIPKNOT.
Full Metal Jackie: Do you think we can expect any kind of jams happening this summer?
Kerry: I don’t think so. I’m kind of jammed out from all the “Big Four” shit.
Full Metal Jackie: Do you think if it came up maybe later on in the tour, you think you might be up for it?
Kerry: I’m always willing to listen. Depends what’s being thrown around, who’s playin’, if I even like the song. I mean, some of the “Big Four” jams I skipped out on, ’cause I didn’t even care for the song. [Laughs] I didn’t want to learn it.