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Dave Lombardo recalls how double-bass break ended up in “Angel Of Death”

Dave Lombardo
Photo by Ekaterina Gorbacheva

Classic Rock

Dave Lombardo recalls how double-bass break ended up in “Angel Of Death”

Slayer was formed in Huntington Park, California in 1981 by the guitarists Jeff Hanneman and Kerry King, the drummer Dave Lombardo and the vocalist/bassist Tom Araya. Lombardo was part of the band from 1981 to 1986, 1987 to 1992 and from 2001 to 2013.


One of the most famous songs from the group is “Angel Of Death” from the 1986 album “Reign In Blood”, which is often recalled for the amazing double-bass drum break. In an interview with Stereogum, the musician recalled how that part ended up in the song.

Dave Lombardo recalls how double-bass break ended up in “Angel Of Death”

“Well, it was part of a drum solo. They used to let me just go off on the drums. We used to play a song called ‘Show No Mercy’, and it started with a drum solo. And I remember one particular show, I believe it was in the Valley in L.A. I did a drum solo.”

“Then I stopped and I just let the double bass go, and it caught Hanneman’s attention. He went, ‘Dude, we should put that in a song.’ I think at the time we were writing some of the ‘Reign In Blood’ music, and he said, ‘You should put that in the middle of this song.’ And so we did.”

“Did I know? Huh-uh. No. It was just a really cool surprise little section of the song. You know, you’re listening to the song, and boom, it goes into this drum fill. I thought it was great, but I didn’t know to what extent it was going to impact the listener. And apparently, it was one of the really cool moments of that record,” Dave Lombardo said.

Since Lombardo left Slayer in 2013 he had been part of many bands like Suicidal Tendencies, The Misfits, Fantômas, Dead Cross, Mr. Bungle and Testament. He recently announced his first solo album “Rites of Percussion” that will be released in 2023.

I am a Brazilian journalist, a Classic Rock and Heavy Metal lover. Music has always been part of my life, helped me through tough moments and was with me to celebrate the good ones. When I became a journalist I knew I wanted to write about my passions. After college I did a postgraduate degree in digital communication. This has helped me to make the website better and bring the best of classic rock to the world! MTB: 0021377/MG

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