Following the announcement that he would be stepping in for Gary Holt while the Slayer guitarist returns home to be with his dying father, footage of former Machine Head guitarist Phil Demmel ripping it up with Slayer in Copenhagen, Denmark last night has surfaced. Demmel commented on the situation via Instagram yesterday (December 3rd), telling fans "I am filling in for a legend who ... replaced a legend in a legendary band on their farewell tour. Despite the fact that Slayer is the reason I wanted to play heavy music, it's beyond my utmost honor to [be] asked to do this."
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Full circle. Karma. It’s so crazy how things work out. I got a text less than 24 hours after I played my last MH note. 11 years ago (almost to the day), I had to leave a tour to fly home and be with my family when my father passes away. Some amazing dudes stepped in to cover for me and to help the band out. I am filling in for a legend who was replaced a legend in a legendary band on their farewell tour. Despite the fact that Slayer is the reason I wanted to play heavy music, it’s beyond my utmost honor to asked to do this. Learning 19 songs (Not just songs, SLAYER songs) has been a daunting task and I have worked very hard to do Gary and the entire camp proud. As we all here send our love and support to @garyholt_official as he goes through a life altering time, the rallying this camp has done is amazing. Thank you all for your support as I grab the baton for a few shows and fly the Bay Area flag high on stage right. And lastly, the biggest hero is @martarino for being so selfless after having her partner home for 2 days, sends him off to follow this crazy dream. All hail the Queen.
The clip above shows off the guitarist's chops as he shreds through classic thrasher "Hell Awaits" with the quartet, pyrotechnics blazing and the crowd in typical amped-up fashion while watching the band. As horns fly and heads band, the modified version of Slayer performs at breakneck speed on this, their extended farewell world tour. Demmel has just three more nights with the group before they break until the next tour leg beginning in March, so check out more footage below — courtesy of Anthrax/Shadows Fall guitarist Jonathan Donais — for more angles and tracks from the show.