Metal Merch

I Swear I Won’t Buy That Slayer Metal Eagle Edition



I will not buy the limited special edition set of Relentless. I will not buy it. I will not pay $180 for a fucking paperweight. I swear to God, I’m fine.

How much money have I given to Slayer already? Haven’t I bought shirt after shirt over the years, even during those eras where the Slayer team was obviously just dicking around with Photoshop? And what of the concert tickets, the records, the backpatches and shoes and aprons? Wasn’t I out there on Record Store Day, spending my hard-earned simoleons on the vinyl single of “When The Stillness Comes”? Haven’t I shown my financial devotion? Well, that stops here, I tell you! They expect me to pay for some huge plastic iteration of their eagle logo? Feh. Buh. Not gonna happen.

Of course I’m curious as to what’s inside this special edition, but, heh, I mean, come on, who isn’t? So what if that plastic eagle is loaded with all sorts of rare bonus shit? Who cares if it contains fold-out posters, limited-edition stickers or patches, vinyl and CD copies of the record, or Jeff Hanneman memorial merchandise unavailable anywhere else? They’re just material possessions, carrying no real spiritual wealth or catalysts of personal growth. It would take someone who is literally addicted to Slayer merch to toss out a buck eighty for those things. Not worth it, I say. I have moral fiber.

And the case itself! Seven pounds of diecast metal in the shape of the Slayer eagle with the logo in red—I mean, who really needs that? An object of that size would have to be fixed onto a wall or in a case to display it. Who walks around their house looking at patches of their wall and wondering where to set up their plastic monument to the best band of the Big 4? That’s not fandom, that’s mania. Dangerous, volatile mania. And I’m certainly not the kind of incomplete human being so blindly dedicated to a band that I would buy something that would no doubt be an active hindrance every time I decide to move. Who does that?

The album will probably suck anyway, right? I mean, that single is just all right, and the album title’s a joke, and the release date feels like a total gimmick. Poor Jeff Hanneman isn’t on it, making it not just a latter-era Slayer record but a latter-latter-era Slayer record. It’s not as though not buying the new Slayer record makes you less of a Slayer fan and therefore a betrayer of who you are! What a nutty idea. And anyway, because the record is probably going to be sub-par, spending $180 on the special-edition eagle set just proves that you only want it so you can physically hold the Slayer logo in your hands, and clutch it to your chest like a child, and say, I got it, it’s mine. Think of the look of disappointment that would flash across your mom’s eyes as she saw you do that.

I mean, obviously, I’d take it if someone gave it to me. In a specific situation. Like, say, I don’t know, I receive it in the mail from Slayer themselves, who have sent me one of the 3,000 copies with a note telling me that among their millions of fans, they’ve always considered me the best and most loyal one and they want me to have this because I deserve it. If that were to happen, I’d obviously have to accept this seven-pound monstrosity and let the tears roll down my face as I fall to my knees with the knowledge that, finally, my decade-plus of dedicated fandom has paid off, that life is worth continuing. It’d just be rude to not accept it, in that very specific situation.

Big metal bands like Slayer are too materialistic these days anyway, and by paying a huge amount of money for this collectible, I’m telling them, Good job, be more focused on merch than music, I will actually buy anything you make if it’s large and cool enough. That’s the old record label way of things. I’m part of a new generation of fans, who care about the music first and foremost, and who won’t stare at a large piece of merch online while actively salivating and doing mental math on how much of my paycheck I can set aside before my girlfriend asks why my rent is short this month.

I’m not gonna buy the special edition of Repentless. Nope. No siree. I’m bigger than that. Better than that. I refuse to budge on this.

I mean, unless it’s on sale.

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