Slayer – Reign In Blood

     With the entire 10 songs on Reign In Blood clocking in at just shy of 30 minutes; when the album was released people who bought the cassette were pissed off that all the songs were repeated on the 2nd side. Then they played the fucker!

     Holy shit!

     Motley Crue‘s album Theater Of Pain bore a sticker that proclaimed the album contained sonic fury, Slayer‘s Reign In Blood bore no such sticker. Unlike Motley Crue‘s release, which contained mediocre drivel, Reign In Blood does actually contain sonic fury. We were blown away by the albums ferociousness and everyone who heard Reign In Blood could not deny that Slayer was a true ThrashMetal band.

     Now days, Reign In Blood is considered an extreme classic and many go so far as to say it is the pinnacle of what a true ThrashMetal album should be. It is timeless. Listening to it today, it is still as heavy, if not heavier, than anything out there.
     Musically, the songs are short bursts of aggression with relentless drum kicking by Dave Lombardo driving the guitars of Jeff Hanneman and Kerry King, which sound more like cats either copulating or being strangled than they do guitars, and Tom Araya‘s guttural screams and spitting vocals to lyrics of death, evil, and torment… (sighs) It’s like dying and going to a very dark and blistering version of heaven.

     Most MetalHeads know this album and those who do not like ThrashMetal cite it as one album even they will listen to.
     See, for all their speed, aggression and ferocity, Slayer are a band of accomplished musicians who know their way around their instruments and how to put a song together. Many bands cite Slayer, and especially the album Reign In Blood, as being a major influence on their song writing. Their have been many Thrash releases since Reign In Blood and not one of them comes close to being what this album is, not even Slayer‘s own releases.

Track Listing for Reign In Blood:
01: Angel Of Death
02: Piece By Piece
03: Necrophobic
04: Alter Of Sacrafice
05: Jesus Saves
06: Criminally Insane
07: Reborn
08: Epidemic
09: Postmortem
10: Raining Blood

     What starts out with a wailing scream and ends with the sound of blood dripping from the heaven’s is one hell of a relentless album. If you have not heard this album, you owe it to yourself – listen to it.


Megadeth – Peace Sells… But Who’s Buying?

     In its infancy, ThrashMetal, was awe-inspiring. There was Voivod, Exciter, Venom, Metallica, and Slayer all with hard to come by albums as all were released on small independant record labels (Music for Nations, Combat, Metal Blade, Megaforce). But, true to its underground roots, even MetalHeads that lived in the then smallish town of Missoula, Montana could get ahold of an album (most times a crappy cassette recording) simply by underground trading. There was no internet so snail-mail was the only way. It worked easily but for the delay of snail-mail. All one had to do was check out the classifieds in metal magazines and send a reply.
     Eventually Budget CD’s & DVD’s opened, although back then it was Budget Record’s & Tape’s. Budget has always (and forever will) have an extensive amount of Metal music, and not just the type you see on Billboard 200.
     Having been listening to Mercyful Fate and Motorhead for years, ThrashMetal was natural progression of sorts. And when Budget opened its doors it brought with it ThrashMetal by the truckloads. To name a few: Overkill, Anthrax, Kreator, Obituary, Celtic Frost, and Megadeth. I still remember what I was doing the first time I heard that classic bass intro to Peace Sells and that bass line has forever been ingrained into my psyche.

     Megadeth was like Metallica (in many ways as I am sure you know) but man, was that singer pissed off or what? He didn’t scream as much as he growled and snarled bitter lyrics along to aggressive music. Then too, he also sang lyrics that told intricate stories with just as much vehemence in his voice as the political lyrics. Megadeth appealed to our anger-of-youth and rabid fascination for all things Thrash. Had we known then just how much Dave Mustaine played a key role in the development of the ThrashMetal genre, he and Megadeth would have been huge from the get-go and not years later. They had popularity from playing ability but were always in Metallica‘s shadow.
     Now days I can say without any doubt, there would not have been ThrashMetal without Dave Mustaine. It is his guitar prowess and respect for theory that permeates early releases by Metallica. Sorry Metallica, you’re good, Dave Mustaine is better.

     Peace Sells… But Who’s Buying? was a breath of fresh air or a bitch-slap upside the head, depending on who you ask. It was not their first release but it was many peoples first encouter with Megadeth. It is considered a classic ThrashMetal album, but, the line-up that plays on the album is not considered the classic Megadeth line-up, Still, Chris Poland is an excellent guitarist and among the Dave’s, Ellefson and Mustaine, he seems right at home. Gar Samuelson, the drummer for the album… Megadeth had, just my opinion, three okay drummers before finding and keeping one who’s proficiency with his chosen instrument matched that of the guitars and bass. Later on that.

Track listing for Peace Sells… But Who’s Buying?:
01: Wake Up Dead
02: The Conjuring
03: Peace Sells
04: Devil’s Island
05: Good Mourning / Black Friday
06: Bad Omen
07: I Ain’t Superstitious
08: My Last Words

     On the remastered version there are four songs, Wake Up Dead, The Conjuring, Peace Sells, and Good Mourning / Black Friday that have been remixed by Randy Burns.