What Might the New Slayer Sound Like?

  • Axl Rosenberg

Nu Slayer

Last week, reader Richard Warrell did something kinda fun for us: he put together a list of all the Slayer songs Jeff Hanneman didn’t write, by way of giving us (and, presumably, himself) some sense of how a new, Hanneman-free Slayer album might sound. I subsequently asserted that the list could be narrowed down even further if you eliminated songs on which Lombardo didn’t play as well.

The resulting, revised list leaves us with fourteen Slayer songs — roughly an album’s worth of music. I’ve compiled those songs (in chronological order of release) into the below playlist. Listen:

From a creative standpoint, this is obviously not the worst thing ever — I’ll take this over Death Magnetic or Super Collider any day (then again, I’d take walking over hot coals over Super Collider).

But it’s also not GREAT. It’s worth noting that literally not one of these songs has been included in Slayer’s most recent setlists, and I’m guessing if someone put a gun to your head and made you compile a Slayer “Greatest Hits” collection, you probably wouldn’t include many, if any, of the above songs.

Things get slightly more interesting when you include Shovel Headed Kill Machine, the 2005 album from Exodus written entirely by guitarist Gary Holt, and featuring one Mr. Paul Bostaph on drums. Assuming Holt is permitted to make songwriting contributions to the next Slayer record, we could easily end up with some tunes which sound kinda like this:

As I’ve said before, it seems pretty likely that this group of musicians could, very easily, make something really cool and exciting for fans. It just shouldn’t be called Slayer.

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