Exodus has released a statement denying rumors that guitarist Gary Holt is leaving the band to become a permanent member of Slayer. It can be read in its entirety below.
Despite Holt recently claiming he wouldn’t join Slayer, “…if it meant the end of what I’ve been doing all my life” in a recent interview with Metal Titans, rumors that the guitarist would, in fact be leaving Exodus flared once again when the band was forced to cancel their spot at this year’s Maryland Death Fest.
However, Exodus denied the rumors in their statement posted on Facebook: “We have recently observed a whirlwind of speculation, conspiracy theories, and just plain ole dumb-assed comments on the internet regarding Exodus’ future and that of Gary Holt’s commitment to this band. The following is an attempt to shed some light on actual facts, as well as trying to clear the air.
“The reason we cancelled our appearance at this years Maryland Death Fest was, in fact, due to Gary’s commitment to his sudden and seriously ill father. Actually, just days prior to the start of the Metal Alliance tour, we were making arrangements to have someone fill in for Gary due to his unknown status. As things worked out, his father was able to recover to a somewhat stable condition, yet he is still not “out of the woods” and continues to be a closely monitored.
“This was obviously a private and personal matter that didn’t warrant public knowledge, but it seems the press release from MDF and then the interview given by Gary about not quitting Exodus was just a random coincidence and we felt it necessary to inform people of the real story. Exodus is not disbanding! Gary will continue to perform on the current Metal Alliance tour, as well as splitting his time between Exodus & Slayer in the future. The band (with Holt) will be appearing at this year’s Hell & Heaven Fest in Guadalajara Mexico as advertised on May 19th. After which, Gary will return home to support and care for his family.
“Our apologies to the MDF staff, as well as to the Exodus fans, who were eager to see us, and we hope everyone understands that family and loved ones comes first.”
Holt has been filling in for Slayer guitarist Jeff Hanneman since 2011 when he contracted a flesh-eating disease called necrotizing fasciitis from a spider bite. In the previous update of his condition, Slayer admitted that they are still uncertain when or if he would return. Slayer’s Kerry King confirmed in a recent interview with Metal Obsession that if Hanneman was permanently replaced by Holt at some point, he would be, “okay with that.”
Exodus are currently performing on the 2013 Metal Alliance tour with Anthrax, High on Fire, Municipal Waste and Holy Grail.