Kerry King is still trying to come up with a band name: “I don’t wanna use my name, ‘cause I’m not a vain dude”

“We had to go with something, so we went with my name. Never in a million years did I wanna do that. But here we are.”

Kerry King photographed playing guitar on stage.

Image: Gina Wetzler / Getty

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Kerry King hasn’t yet given up on the idea of giving his new band a name, as it turns out he never wanted to release music under his own in the first place.

King released his debut solo record, From Hell I Rise, in May. He made it clear after Slayer decided to retire back in 2019 that he wasn’t ready to rest on his laurels, and got to work on new material.

Slayer are due to temporarily reform for three festivals this year – Louder Than Life, Riot Fest and Aftershock – but aside from that, it doesn’t look like the legendary thrash metal band will be making such reunions a regular thing.

King, however, has plenty more in the pipeline for his music work outside of the band. His new team consists of Death Angel vocalist Mark Osegueda, former Slayer drummer Paul Bostaph, former Machine Head guitarist Phil Demmel, and former Hellyeah bassist Kyle Sanders.

Speaking to Sweden Rock (via Blabbermouth), King says he’s “still trying” to find a name for the group. “I hate it [laughs]. Every time I came up with [a possible band name], it would get all the way to the trademark attorneys and they would say, ‘You don’t wanna do this.’

“I’d be, like, ‘Why? Can’t we buy it?’ If it’s just a little tiny company or something. And a couple of times it just had too many uses. And I said, ‘Well…’ It came time to announce those American festivals, and we had to go with something, so we went with my name. Never in a million years did I wanna do that. But here we are,” he says.

As for the early band name suggestions that didn’t make the cut, King says there were two prominent ones that nearly made it: “The earliest one – the Internet was right – the earliest one was Blood Reign.

“The next one was King’s Reign, which I would have been okay with. And the band loved it. ‘Cause I kept trying to say, ‘I don’t wanna use my name. I don’t wanna use my name,’ ‘cause I’m not a vain dude; I’m not like that. And that one got blown out of the water too.”

Head to Kerry King’s official website to find out when he’ll be playing near you.

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