Canada’s metal contingent have been waiting a long time for this.
The aptly-titled Canadian Carnage tour finally hits the Molson Amphitheatre tonight after months of on-again/off-again ordeals.
Initially slated for November 2009, Canadian Carnage features extreme music progenitors Slayer and Megadeth performing a string of co-headlining shows. Due to internal issues however, Slayer had been forced to cancel and reschedule twice over the past nine months.
“Tom (Araya, bassist/vocalist) had neck surgery,” guitarist Kerry King relates about the band’s unfortunate circumstances which caused them to stave off shows. Years of Araya’s unique stage performance — drooping his head and spinning his hair erratically — eventually wound up creating a pain-inducing medical condition dubbed Cervical Radiculopathy that prevented him from performing.
“At first he was trying to avoid surgery by doing other things to get better but that didn’t work,” King continues. “The first postponement was hoping he’d get better but eventually he had to take the ultimate route. He’s pain-free now but he had to change the way he plays. He can perform and sing but can’t headbang. I still catch him though. He knows he’s not supposed to but it’s second nature. I see it and I’m like, ‘What the hell are you doing?’”
Problem solved, Araya’s back and able to continue with Canadian Carnage, a tour that also boasts both bands performing their most lauded albums entirely. Slayer will run through their genre-defining 1990 effort, Seasons In The Abyss, as Megadeth celebrate the 20th anniversary of their own landmark album, Rust In Peace.
“We’ve only done it twice so far and both times it was unannounced,” King reveals about performing the pivotal release. “With this tour, we’re doing an hour and 10 minutes, so aside from Seasons, we’re only able to play five other songs. That gets tough. We’re doing two new songs (from latest effort, 2009’s World Painted Blood) so that only leaves three or four historic songs other than the stuff from Seasons. As long as it’s not (1986’s Reign In Blood) anymore.”