During an appearance on a recent episode of "The Jasta Show", hosted by HATEBREED frontman Jamey Jasta, TESTAMENT singer Chuck Billy lamented the fact that his band has yet to do a proper tour with METALLICA even though the two groups have known each other for more than three decades.
"Whenever I'm asked, 'What is the one band you wish you can play with?', it's always METALLICA," Chuck said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET. "It's, like, we grew up with these guys [in] the same era, but we never went on tour [with them]. I think a few years ago, we did three shows in Germany [with them] on a festival. It was funny, 'cause our band walked in and their band was walking, and we all kind of met in this hallway. And [we were], like, 'Hey, what's going on?' It was a like old friends seeing each other. I think it was James [Hetfield] or Lars [Ulrich], they said, 'Oh my God. Look at you guys. You guys all still got your hair. You guys are big.' 'Cause Steve [DiGiorgio, TESTAMENT bassist] and Gene [Hoglan, TESTAMENT drummer] are all six-[foot]-two, six-[foot]-three. But it was great seeing 'em. And we're actually playing [at the] Aftershock [festival in Sacramento], if that happens, in October. They're kicking off four nights there, and we're kicking off the first night with them. So that'll be good."
Billy went on to express his hope that TESTAMENT could still properly share the stage with METALLICA. "It would be great," he said. "And who knows? Maybe one day. Even the [San Francisco] Bay Area shows, when they do those special shows, EXODUS played, DEATH ANGEL played — a lot of people got to play. I don't know. I do know, because Eric [Peterson, TESTAMENT guitarist] — I don't know if you know the story — Eric actually married Kirk's [Hammett, METALLICA guitarist] ex when they split up. So I don't know if that has something [to do with it] — [a] deep down underlying reason. That's the only thing [we can think of]. We're, like, 'What is it, Eric? What'd you do to us? Why did you date her? Now we can't play with METALLICA.' [Laughs]"
Back in 2017, Hetfield was asked in an interview with Elliott Fullam of Little Punk People to name his favorite thrash bands that are not part of the so-called "Big Four" of 1980s thrash metal (METALLICA, SLAYER, MEGADETH and ANTHRAX). James said: "Oh, my God! There's tons of them. Well, EXODUS for sure. We grew up with those guys in the [San Francisco] Bay Area. Oh, and we stole their guitar player; that too. [Laughs] But, yeah, I think they're great. TESTAMENT… A lot of bands in the Bay Area, a lot of thrash stuff."
TESTAMENT's "The Bay Strikes Back Tour" with EXODUS and DEATH ANGEL will kick off on October 6 at the Fremont Theater in San Luis Obispo, California and make stops in Austin, New York, and Detroit before concluding on November 27 at The Fox in Oakland.