Ex-SLAYER Drummer DAVE LOMBARDO Teams Up With Wife In New Project VENAMORIS

January 4, 2023

Legendary extreme metal drummer Dave Lombardo (SLAYER, FANTÔMAS, TESTAMENT, MR. BUNGLE, MISFITS, DEAD CROSS) has joined forces with his wife Paula in a new project called VENAMORIS.

VENAMORIS's debut album, "Drown In Emotion", will be released on February 10. The LP was recorded and produced at Ritmo Studio by Dave Lombardo. Drum overdubs were recorded at Studio 606. It was mixed at Ritmo Studio by David A. Lombardo and mastered by John Golden at Golden Mastering.

"Drown In Emotion" features guest appearances by Tyler Bates (JERRY CANTRELL, MARILYN MANSON),Roberto "Ra" Díaz (KORN, SUICIDAL TENDENCIES),Jack Gibson (EXODUS),George Pajon (BLACK EYED PEAS, CAIRO KNIFE FIGHT) and Tim Stewart (LADY GAGA, DAMNAGE).

Track listing:

01. Let Me Be
02. We Fall
03. This Is Me
04. Crimson Tears
05. Misguided
06. Drowning Emotion
07. I Love It
08. In My Silence
09. It's Gone
10. Tell Me How You Know
11. Oceans
12. So Good

Founded in 2021 by what can only be called, astral influence, VENAMORIS was launched a result of some persistent persuasion on Dave's part. The 57-year-old musician, who is in charge of drums and production on the record, explains: "Several months after meeting Paula in 2010, she hesitantly shared with me her past decade-long career as the lead backup singer for Wayne Newton. She later played me some of the demos she recorded throughout the years, and I was floored by her sonically soothing, rich tone and natural, instinctive ability to harmonize. I was determined to persuade her to return to her creative self. It's been a deeply gratifying journey witnessing this music come to life."

Canadian-born singer/songwriter Paula Lombardo, who performs vocals and piano for this project, bursts with vulnerability and intimacy, addressing a broad scope of emotion: anger, healing, pain, hope. It's evident that VENAMORIS was founded out of love, passion, communication, respect, and trust. One person thriving in music encouraged the other, who had abandoned music to find their way back. It is the result of many late nights with too much wine, and even more truth laid bare: an aural couple's journaling generously shared with the world.

Last month, Dave collaborated with his wife on a "love song" called "The Gift". On December 19, the Cuban-born musician shared an Andy Wallis-created video for the track via his YouTube channel, and he wrote in an accompanying message: "A romantic love song for the holiday season, written by my wife and I."

"The Gift" was written and recorded by Paula and Dave Lombardo and was mastered by John Golden of Golden Mastering.

During a recent question-and-answer session with the readers of U.K.'s Metal Hammer magazine, Lombardo was asked if he would have joined SLAYER guitarist Kerry King's new band had he been approached about it. He responded: "I knew that was coming. I am, right now, working on too many other projects and I wouldn't be able to accept. New DEAD CROSS, MR. BUNGLE… the pandemic put a lot of stuff on hold, so we need to play some catch-up there. Besides that, he's got Paul Bostaph [playing with him], and I don't think he would have the need to ask me."

Lombardo was also asked if he would play with SLAYER again if the band reunited and wanted him to be part of the lineup. He said: "I don't think that's ever going to happen. But, yeah, I'd listen to whatever it is they had to say. That's it. You can't go any further than that."

Lombardo, who has spent most of the recent years between crossover pioneers SUICIDAL TENDENCIES, horror-punk icons MISFITS, hardcore supergroup DEAD CROSS and MR. BUNGLE, was effectively fired from SLAYER after sitting out the group's Australian tour in February/March 2013 due to a contract dispute with the other bandmembers. He was later replaced by Bostaph, who was previously SLAYER's drummer from 1992 until 2001.

Shortly after his dismissal, Lombardo said that he discovered that 90 percent of SLAYER's tour income was being deducted as expenses, including fees to management, costing the band millions and leaving them with about 10 percent to split four ways. While he and bassist/vocalist Tom Araya hired auditors to figure out what had happened, Lombardo said he was never allowed to see any of the information obtained.

SLAYER played its last-ever show in November 2019 at The Forum in Los Angeles.

Lombardo rejoined TESTAMENT last year.

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