Tag Archives: jeff hanneman

Slayer’s “Show No Mercy”; Still Merciless @ 30 Years (1983-2013)

It was thirty years ago today that the Metal darkness known as Slayer released their debut album “Show No Mercy” on Metal Blade Records and while the Thrash Metal movement was still growing thanks to bands like Metallica and Raven, it was going to get a serious and more intense boot to the posterior based on this album. Slayer had been together since 1981 when Kerry King formed the group with drummer Dave Lombardo then added Jeff Hanneman and Tom Araya to the final roster and their earliest imagery paid heavy focus to Satanic iconography and the same principles applied to their music. Songs that would eventually make up the “Show No Mercy” debut. The guys in the band had to self-finance the release even though they had been signed but let’s face it, Metal Blade Records had only been around for a year at this time and Metal while popular in some circles was really quite the underground thing (especially with the kinds of bands that they were featuring back then). Now I will admit that back in 1983 I was not listening to Metal that was this intense and it would take me a few years to get into Slayer but clearly the band was onto something because their material and live presence was sheer brutality. I was often told by friends who had seen them during their formative years that you never forgot a Slayer show and that you would rarely leave unscathed after attending one. They had bruises to prove it but that never stopped them from going to another nearby show if it was possible to do so. Reception wise, according to the album’s Wiki entry “Show No Mercy” would become one of Metal Blade Records highest selling albums and that is something that Kerry King, Tom Araya and Dave Lombardo should be very proud of as musicians. Sadly the Metal world lost founding member Jeff Hanneman earlier in the year so I toast him for this accomplishment posthumously. It is however safe to say that his memory and influence still resonate loud across the genre. Today’s Metal scene also finds original drummer Dave Lombardo out of the lineup and replaced by the talented Paul Bostaph.
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Slayer’s “South Of Heaven” Reaches One Quarter Of A Century

The younger fans might be shocked at this but us older more entrenched Metal folk are proud to raise a glass of whatever your drinking this evening to the fact that Slayer’s 1988 opus “South Of Heaven” has reached its quarter century mark. Okay, I will admit that it hits me with some awe as well because I am of the vintage where I remember this stuff being in the “new releases” section of the neighborhood record store. The album was slightly slower than its predecessor “Reign In Blood” and according to interview posts from the late great Jeff Hanneman, this had been done on purpose since the band knew that they could not compete with the previous albums ferocity or impact on the Metal scene of the time. Resultant of this slower pace, the album received widely mixed reviews with some long time fans embracing it and others putting it on the bottom of their Thrash Metal pile. Now I’ve often admitted to being a latecomer to the Slayer scene even though my friends would be blasting it whenever we all convened. I was more a Power Metal guy and supporting that growing scene than the now matured Thrash Metal one. Don’t worry, I have made up for lost time in some sense.
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Slayer’s Jeff Hanneman Has Passed Away (5/2/2013)

The news hit the Metal Community late Thursday en masse it seemed with the sad report that Slayer’s Jeff Hanneman had passed away. I was sitting in Duke’s Bar having a little bit of supper when my phone started blowing up with texts and emails about the news and some others asking if I could confirm what people were hearing. Sadly, this was indeed true and the bands official statement read as follows

“Slayer is devastated to inform that their bandmate and brother, Jeff Hanneman, passed away at about 11AM this morning near his Southern California home. Hanneman was in an area hospital when he suffered liver failure. He is survived by his wife Kathy, his sister Kathy and his brothers Michael and Larry, and will be sorely missed.”

jeff hanneman, slayer

Jeff Hanneman was born Jeffrey John Hanneman in 1964 and as many know full well was a founding member of the legendary Thrash Metal band Slayer. As a guitarist Hanneman was very influenced by the speed and pace of the Punk scene and this helped formulate the style that he would bring to a larger than life sense in the mighty Slayer. The diehard fans might not need a reminder of this but to take a piece from his Wikipedia entry “Hanneman had contributed both lyrical and musical material to every Slayer album and wrote the songs “Raining Blood”, “War Ensemble”, “South of Heaven”, “Seasons in the Abyss” and “Angel of Death”, which are played at almost every live Slayer show”. Sadly Jeff Hanneman would withdrew from his active touring schedule sometime in early 2011 after he contracted necrotizing fasciitis, which is a debilitating skin disorder. It was widely reported that this was the result of a spider bite that had happened while on tour somewhere in South America. By 2012, there were interviews with Tom Araya who had spoke of Jeff’s recovery from the disease but later in February 2013, Kerry King revealed that he was still dealing with continuing health problems that were keeping him from being an on tour active part of Slayer. When Jeff passed away yesterday morning it was in a hospital near his home and of liver failure but so far there is no information as to whether or not this initial disease had contributed to what caused his death. Whatever the case may be it is still a shame and was news that crushed the larger Heavy Metal community whether they be musicians or worldwide fans.

jeff hanneman, slayer

Personally speaking I got into Slayer much later than my friends did. I leaned more toward the glittery stuff for awhile but had a heavy band and they all really enjoyed Slayer. Once I started listening to it a little more at their suggestion I got much more into it. I technically started my listening exposure to the band with what they had on “Hell Awaits” but it would not be until “Seasons In The Abyss” that I would actually go out and buy my own Slayer music. These two shots in the memorial were shot by me of Jeff in concert with Slayer. One from 2006 and another from 2007. I did not shoot the band a lot but was glad I had the chance to in the end. Jeff Hanneman is a figure in Thrash Metal legend and one that will never ever be forgotten. May he Rest In Peace.

Memorial thoughts are always welcome on our postings of this nature. What did Jeff Hanneman mean to you as a Metal fan or even a musician. I will leave the comments open for your submissions.

Official Wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeff_Hanneman

“Still Reigning” (re-issue) by Slayer

Artist: Slayer
Title: “Still Reigning”
Label: Columbia Records
Release Date: 8/17/2010
Genre: Thrash Metal
Rating: 3.75/5

Much like the “War At The Warfield” film by Slayer, the “Still Reigning” DVD has also been reissued for the masses to consume and since we compiled our thoughts about it when it was initially released in 2004 I have slightly modified that text to be more current and re-present it to you below:

Out of print for a few years now, Slayer has once again released their great DVD entitled “Still Reigning”. It was initially delivered to their maniacal fan base in 2004 and at the time was only preceded by the bands first official DVD film “War At The Warfield” in 2003. From the onset there are a few stand out points to be aware of which I think all of the bands fans will enjoy. The main and probably most important fact is how this will mark the first official release that features original drummer Dave Lombardo. He rejoined the lineup as a permanent member in 2003 replacing Paul Bostaph who had served well in this role for a number of years. Bostaph’s injury prevented further work with the band and who better to replace the replacement but the original. Since the time of this film I have gotten to enjoy Paul’s playing in Testament where he is a perfect fit but with no offense to Paul, Slayer is at is Metal best with Dave on the skins. Some fans might have already enjoyed a film with Dave on drums but that item was featured as a part of the career spanning boxed-set “Soundtrack To The Apocalypse” exclusively. Let’s face it, not everyone is going to shell out almost $100 to get it, even though I recommend that they do. The next stand out piece is the fact that the album “Reign In Blood” is performed in it’s entirety from beginning to end. For many Metal fans this album is considered to be a seminal work in the bands catalog and one can only imagine just what it does to a ravenous audience that gets to hear it performed to completion. This is a great new way to enjoy a truly killer album, and no matter if your favorite is “Angel Of Death”, “Raining Blood”, or “Piece By Piece” it will throttle you until the finish without question.. If you were a fan that is old enough or had been following the band around the time of this actual tour which was the “Jaegermeister Music Tour” of 2003; you will remember how the “Reign In Blood” album was performed as the encore to the bands set. At the final number which was “Raining Blood” the band, the stage and all the amplifiers were doused in “blood” as the closer. You would have gotten a lot of this on you as well had you been close enough to the action.
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“War At The Warfield” (remaster) by Slayer

Artist: Slayer
Title: “War At The Warfield” (remaster)
Label: Columbia Records
Release Date: 8/17/2010
Genre: Thrash Metal
Rating: 4/5

While this is historically the first Slayer DVD to ever be released it is actually the second long form concert video that they had done since it was preceded by the long unavailable VHS release “Live Intrusion”. Originally released in 2004, and recorded during the bands 2001 tour for “God Hates Us All”, this DVD was also out of print until the recent 2010 re-issue. The fans that missed this the first time around should be aware that the drummer for the video is Paul Bostaph who had replaced Dave Lombardo in the lineup. Bostaph is good and a very aggressive drummer, but as you watch the video you might quickly realize that some of the super sonic speed we loved so much from Lombardo is not present. That is in no way a slight to Paul’s playing, as Dave is pretty much a drummer without peer when it comes to how Slayer music is played. The rest of the guys are still in the lineup and that is of course Tom Araya, Kerry King and Jeff Hanneman who maintain course over the Thrash Metal crazed minions in front of them at the Warfield.
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