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Slayer Credit Exodus Guitarist Gary Holt With Fantastic Fill-In Performance

Jo Hale/Kevin Winter, Getty Images

Slayer are back out on tour this summer as part of the Rockstar Mayhem Festival, but the band is down one of their brothers as Jeff Hanneman continues his recover from a debilitating spider bite that’s left him going through extensive rehab.

As they head out again, Exodus guitarist Gary Holt is rejoining them as he’s done on several past legs of their touring. Drummer Dave Lombardo tells Loudwire, “We’ve known Gary since ’83-’84, and he’s always been really a good guy and an excellent player and he was like the first one really that came to my mind for a guitar player and we had just seen him recently and were impressed by his performance, so he was like the perfect choice.”

Even though Slayer are one of the most respected and technically proficient bands going, Lombardo says that part of the reason Holt was the right choice to fill-in was because he didn’t need much of a learning curve. The drummer says, “It was immediate. His playing from the get-go was great. He did all his homework, he stepped up and did a fantastic job and still is. I couldn’t have seen anybody else do his job.”

And as far as fitting in with the band, Lombardo says of Holt, “He’s like part of us in a way because he’s part of our generation. He’s our age, and he’s a good guy.”

Holt will continue to sit in with the band until Hanneman feels his rehab is complete. The group issued a statement detailing the guitarist’s status, and Lombardo adds, “He’s doing great. Well, he’s not doing great, but he is recovering is what I meant to say. He’s definitely recovering and doing as best as he can to move forward and heal as fast as possible.”

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