One of the most notorious members of thrash metal forefathers, of the largely popular Big-4, graced downtown Edmonton with their sacrilegious presence on Tuesday night. Personally, I couldn't have been more excited about this gig! With their hellish songs of hatred and evil, Slayer, thrashed the cores of their audience at the Shaw Conference Centre, pummeling their fans with a heavy-as-hell 20 song set, spanning their 30-plus-year career.
In tow, fellow metal heavy weights, Testament and Carcass, pleasantly warmed up the crowd, delivering a healthy dosage of guitar-shreddery and double-kick-madness to the masses. Surely, preparing the headbangers and moshers in the audience for the ritualistic-chaos that was about to ensue.
With a white curtain draped in front of the stage, projections of sacrilegious symbols faded in and out, while sweeping across the canvas before displaying Slayer's pentagram logo. As the curtain fell, an eruption of heavily distorted guitars clashed against the roars of the audience. Aggressive from the start, Slayer's distinctive sound oozed out of the amplifiers, causing crowd surfers to worm-roll over the front rail, and a frenzy of whirlwind moshing in the pits below.
It's been roughly five years since I last saw Slayer in concert, so it's safe to say that I was anticipating this show from the day that the Edmonton date was announced. Sharing the common opinion, I was not disappointed with the song choices of Slayer's set list for the night. The band nailed a handful of fan favorite tracks, such as: "Seasons in the Abyss", "Hell Awaits" and, "Black Magic", to name a few. Over all, Slayer put on a display of raw heaviness, showcasing that the spirit of heavy metal does not wither with age. If any band out there is going to show an audience what thrash metal is, what it means, and how it's done, that band will always be Slayer, as they continue to maintain their spot in the ranks of being one of the most influential, and iconic metal bands of this lifetime.