*STORY AND PHOTO COURTESY OF BLABBERMOUTH.NET*
Mitchell Peters of Billboard.biz recently conducted an interview with Scott Sokol, SLAYER's booking agent at Pinnacle Entertainment for the past 15 years.
Asked if there were ever discussions about taking a break from touring after the May 2013 death of SLAYER guitarist Jeff Hanneman, Sokol said: "I think if it happened while they were on tour it might've been different. But Jeff hadn't been [touring] with the band for close to three years at this point. So it wasn't like [Hanneman's replacement] Gary Holt [of EXODUS] was new to the equation. At the time of Jeff's passing, Gary had been in the band for two and a half years. It wasn't going to help anybody to cancel what they were doing. The band likes to go out there and play. Not that I'm a counselor, or anything, but I think part of the way they deal with things is to do what they love. And they love to go out there and do their thing."
Sokol also spoke about how SLAYER's live show has changed since Gary Holt joined the band to replace Jeff Hanneman. "I don't think they've really missed a beat there," he said. "There's no replacement for Jeff. Gary doesn't replace Jeff, who is a legend unto himself. But Gary Holt, to a degree, is also that. He's just a little different stylistically. Brian Johnson and Bon Scott are different frontmen for AC/DC, but both are legendary in their own right. So in some way you could look at it like that."
Regarding whether there are plans for the band to record some new material soon, Sokol said: "They're definitely working on new music. More things will be revealed in the coming weeks."