From the Department of Satanically Bad News, this just in: Slayer bassist/vocalist Tom Araya has had to cancel the band's forthcoming "American Carnage" tour with Megadeth and Testament, due to a back problem that requires immediate surgery.
Considering that they were kind enough to invite me to come watch them rehearse (!) in Seattle prior to their previously scheduled show at WaMu Theater, I am extra-bummed. They are working on rescheduling dates for later this spring, so hang on to your tickets for now.
Unfortunately, it appears that headbanging truly is hazardous to your health; his doctors are linking his injuries directly to his notoriously animated stage performance. More from the press release after the jump.Via publicist Julie Arkenstone:
"The headbanging Araya, known for aggressively swinging his long mane of hair while performing, began experiencing back problems while on the band's Australian/New Zealand/Japanese tour last October. In spite of his rapidly increasing pain and discomfort, he carried on with the tour, but immediately upon returning home saw an orthopedic specialist who diagnosed a Cervical Radiculopathy. The rocker initially did not want to take the major surgery route, so the specialist recommended a series of minimally-invasive procedures. While those procedures have resulted in some improvement, Araya continues to deal with intermittent bouts of severe pain, numbness and muscle spasms. The surgical procedure that Araya will undergo, called an Anterior Cervical Discectomy with Fusion, is a relatively routine practice and the recovery rate is excellent."