There are many perilous ways one can spend time off – Volcano-boarding down Cerro Negro, Nicaragua’s active volcano, or maybe bungee jumping from a helicopter over the bubbling crater of Chile’s Villarrica volcano. How about a visit to Sao Paulo’s Snake Island, home of some 4000 golden lancehead vipers whose venom can melt human flesh, or shark diving without a cage in South Africa. But nothing is quite as hazardous or risky as a night in the pit at a Slayer concert. Add to that the ferociousness of Lamb of God and Behemoth, and you’ve got a Satan-approved triple bill of Biblical proportions.
For more than three decades, Slayer’s onslaught has proven the band to be the supreme thrash-metal band on the planet, the band that other heavy acts are measured against and aspire to. Their membership in “The Big Four” – Metallica, Slayer, Megadeth and Anthrax – the four bands that defined the thrash/metal genre – secures their place in music history. The two-time Grammy-winners have also accumulated an abundance of certified Gold Albums along with “Best…” awards from media outlets all over the world, including Kerrang!, SPIN, Metal Hammer, Revolver, and Esquire. Throughout Slayer’s history, the band has never faltered in unleashing its extreme and focused sonic assault, and, unlike many of its contemporaries who commercialized their sound, Slayer has remained crushing and brutal, steadfastly refusing to cater to the mainstream. Slayer’s founding member, guitarist Jeff Hanneman passed in 2013, and Exodus guitarist Gary Holt has been filling in for him since. Paul Bostaph, who was Slayer’s drummer from ’94 – ’01, has rejoined bassist/vocalist Tom Araya and guitarist Kerry King, and is back behind the kit.
In September 2015, Slayer released Repentless, the band’s 12th studio album, the first without Hanneman and first with producer Terry Date, to widespread rave reviews and the highest chart debut of the band’s career. The band also teamed up with director BJ McDonnell for three high-concept and brutal music videos for the album’s title track, then for “You Against You,” and the most recent, “Pride in Prejudice.” Dark Horse Comics is publishing a three-issue comic book series based on McDonnell’s original story concept for the videos and written by “Metalocalypse” director Jon Schnepp. Issue #1 was released January 25, 2017, with #2 and #3 coming in late February and late March, respectively.