Iconic Metal Band Reuniting for Major Festival Performances 4 Years After Retiring

California thrash metal icons Slayer will be playing Louder Than Life and Riot Fest in 2024.

Iconic thrash metalers Slayer is reuniting for two major festival performances, four years after retiring. Metal Injection reports that the band will be performing headlining sets at Kentucky's Louder Than Life Festival and Chicago's Riot Fest 2024, both in September.

As for who will be playing, it's the same Slayer lineup from when the band called it quits back in 2019: Tom Araya on bass and handling vocals, Kerry King and Gary Holt on guitars, and Paul Bostaph on drums. In a statement, Araya said, "Nothing compares to the 90 minutes when we're on stage playing live, sharing that intense energy with our fans. And to be honest, we have missed that."

King added, "Have I missed playing live? Absolutely. Slayer means a lot to our fans; they mean a lot to us. It will be five years since we have seen them."

Slayer was formed in Huntington Park, California, in 1981 by King and Araya, along with guitarist Jeff Hanneman and drummer Dave Lombardo. They quickly became a big deal in the trash scene, and are considered one of the genre's "big four" bands, alongside Metallica, Megadeth, and Anthrax. 

Lombardo left Slayer in 1992, but returned in 2001. He exited again in 2013. Both times, Lombardo was replaced by Bostaph. Sadly, Hanneman died of liver cirrhosis in 2013. Holt, who is also the guitarist for fellow California thrashers Exodus, was brought in the same year to handle guitar duties. 

Prior to their 2019 retirement, Slayer released a total of 12 studio albums, with the last being 2015's Repentless. There is no word at this time on whether or not the band plans to do further touring or make new music, but we do know that King has started his own new musical project, of which Bostaph is also a member.