Here’s a passage from D.X. Ferris’ just-released contribution to the 33 1/3 music book series. Ferris’ entry concentrates on Slayer’s Reign in Blood:

“By ’92, almost every band from ’86 [specifically Metallica, Anthrax and Megadeth] was missing some crucial element that once made them great. Except Slayer…

“Slayer held it together. Slayer kept their fans in the game. A Slayer album arrived every few years, no matter what you were doing in life, no matter what you’d been listening to. And they were all, at least, pretty darned good.”

Those are pretty much my sentiments exactly – in fact, they echo something I wrote way back in February of ’07 (by the way, that might sound like I’m implying that Ferris ripped me off, but I’m not – I’m just sayin’ great minds think alike is all). I know lots of people hate hate hate Slayer’s post-Seasons in the Abyss output, including 2006’s Christ Illusion – but I’ve just never really understood that. The band has been consistently making good thrash for almost three decades now, and that’s why I always get behind them.

So I’m more than happy to report that band is working on some new shit, Kerry King tells Total Guitar:

“We’re supposed to have [a new album] ready at the end of the year! There’s been talk of all kinds of odd things, because the record industry changes every day. We’ve talked about maybe putting out a couple of songs from an upcoming record through iTunes, so we can play something new on the Unholy Alliance III tour. You know, that’s not so far outside the realm of possibility. As far as how much we’re gonna get done by the end of the year? I have no idea.

“Jeff [Hanneman, guitar] has a couple of things. I’ve got ideas that I’ve never finished, so I wanna get back to working on those. Some of them are really cool. I haven’t recorded anything yet because I want to finish the songs first — I like them to have a beginning and an end before I demo them.”

As Rob at Metal Injection pointed out, it’s good to hear that these old dogs are willing to try some new tricks, in terms of how they get their music to the masses. New albums by Metallica, Anthrax and Megadeth are usually iffy propositions, but a new Slayer album? I can’t help but get excited by the idea.


P.S. Ferris’ book on Reign is really, really fucking good (and I’m only on page 39). I had a really hard fucking time finding my copy, but if you can track one down, it’s totally worth the eleven bucks.

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