Slayer: Repentless review – thrash masters still stupidly exciting

(Nuclear Blast)

Despite the vanishing drummer syndrome that affects most bands of their ilk at some point, Slayer have always been a model of consistency and a band that fans of vicious, vein-bursting heavy metal can rely on. As a result, the death of guitarist Jeff Hanneman – author of many of Slayer’s biggest anthems – caused many devotees to fear the worst. They needn’t have: Repentless is an imperious cuffing away of all that cynicism, original members Tom Araya and Kerry King’s determination to keep the evil thrash flag flying high manifesting itself in an exhilarating blast of prime, 21st-century Slayer, replete with all the breakneck tempos, whiplash-inducing changes of pace and swivel-eyed declarations of defiance that the faithful will quite rightly demand. The finest moments rival anything in the band’s canon: the furious title track, a tribute to Hanneman that threatens to rattle the rafters in Hell, the runaway juggernaut of Take Control and the Hanneman-penned Piano Wire are all stupidly exciting. Still the masters of this stuff, Slayer have honoured a fallen comrade in the best possible way.


Dom Lawson

The GuardianTramp

Related Content

Article image
Slayer review – thrash legends unleash a barrage of malevolence
The LA four-piece’s final world tour delivers a furious rush of excitement in a celebratory sweep through 37 years of mayhem

Dom Lawson

04, Nov, 2018 @2:46 PM

Article image
Slayer: Reign in Blood vinyl reissue – review
Slayer's definitive album, and one of the great metal albums of all time, sounds just as Satan intended on this deluxe vinyl reissue, writes Dom Lawson

Dom Lawson

19, Dec, 2013 @10:45 PM

Article image
Slayer review – vital, vicious and loud
With a reconfigured lineup and renewed commitment to the infernal cause, the LA metallers reclaimed their crown as the masters of darkness

Dom Lawson

01, Dec, 2015 @12:18 PM

Rock live review, Slayer/Trivium, Hammersmith Apollo, London

Hammersmith Apollo, London: Even with something as visceral and immediate as thrash metal, it takes time to get this good, and Slayer were nothing short of superb

Jamie Thomson

04, Nov, 2008 @12:57 PM

Slipknot/Slayer, SECC, Glasgow

SECC, Glasgow

James Smart

05, Oct, 2004 @10:58 PM

Article image
CD: Slayer, Christ Illusion


Jamie Thomson

18, Aug, 2006 @2:57 PM

Article image
Slayer announce global farewell tour
‘The age of Slayer is coming to an end,’ announce the legendary heavy metal band after 37 years and nearly 3,000 gigs

Laura Snapes

24, Jan, 2018 @11:26 AM

Article image
Slayer guitarist pulls out of world tour over spider bite
Jeff Hanneman has still not fully recovered from complications caused by a suspected spider bite last year

Sean Michaels

02, May, 2012 @9:47 AM

Article image
Slayer: where to start in their back catalogue
In Listener’s Digest, our writers help you explore the work of great musicians. Next up: the LA metal band who made the sky pour with blood

Joe Muggs

22, Apr, 2020 @7:11 AM

Article image
Man judged unfit to stand murder trial after claiming Slayer were involved
A judge ruled Leroy Smith III unfit to stand trial, after he claimed the heavy metal band had been a factor in the crime

Guardian music

07, Jan, 2015 @10:08 AM