Could Dette rejoin Slayer full time?
Jon Dette won’t comment on the possibility that he could rejoin Slayer full time after the band dropped drummer Dave Lombardo for their Australian tour.
But the stand-in sticksman admits he’s enjoyed his stint with his former colleagues – and they appear to have enjoyed it too.
Founding member Lombardo was replaced at short notice by guitarist Kerry King after raising concerns over the thrash giants’ business model. No word has been given on the chances of him getting back behind the kit – although King has said frontman Tom Araya has had doubts for some time.
Dette – who played drums in the mid-90s between Paul Bostaph’s two stints before Lombardo’s return – tells HeavyMag: “It’s baby steps right now.
“I think it would be too early for me to make a comment like that at this time. But all I can tell you is that we’re having a great time. It feels great on stage and everybody that’s actually at the shows and seen the shows – not just the fans, but even the crew on the side of the stage – all have smiles on their faces. I must be doing something right; and I guess we’ll see what the future brings.”
But he accepts fans have good reason to be upset over the sudden lineup change. “Lombardo has been such an integral part of Slayer and it’s only natural,” he says. “I’m a Slayer fan first. I paused a little bit when I heard the news.
“But you’re never going to please everyone. The only thing I can do is give it the integrity that the music deserves; then I feel I’ve done my job. If the fans accept it, then they accept it. If they don’t, they don’t – but that’s out of my control.”
Dette faced a schedule headache when he accepted the Slayer role, because he was already standing in for Anthrax drummer Charlie Benante on the same Soundwave touring festival.
“I was asking myself, ‘How I am going to be able to do this? Iis it logistically possible?’ I didn’t know if Anthrax was going to be on one completely different area. Once I found out that logistically we could make it work I think that’s what put me at ease the most.
“It’s definitely a physical challenge, but it was one that I attacked with a smile on my face. I was looking forward to it.”
Slayer are currently touring with only two full-time members – Exodus guitarist Gary Holt remains in place of Jeff Hanneman, who’s still recovering from a near-fatal spider bite sustained in 2011.