This isn’t fair, but anybody that has followed Slayer’s career knows this to be true—they simply can’t top their 1986 thrash metal masterpiece Reign In Blood. Whether they have truly tried or not can be questioned, but inevitably Tom Araya, Jeff Hanneman and Kerry King have failed in recreating the concentrated evil that oozes from RIB’s furious speed metal core.
While they had gotten close with 1990’s Seasons In The Abyss and more recently in 2001 with God Hates Us All at establishing dominance and new ways to inject evil and power into their music, the trio still couldn’t touch RIB.
The only thing left was to do was hope for such things.
In 2006, our prayers have been answered on their ninth proper studio release Christ Illusion. This album crushes everything they’ve done in their post-RIB era. The biggest reason for this triumphant statement rests with the return of their original drummer in Dave Lombardo.
Lombardo, gone since Seasons, simply makes Slayer better. His double-bass prowess, combined with his speedy tempo and killer fills push King and Hanneman’s riff attack back to RIB type effectiveness. “Flesh Storm” and “Consfearacy” can easily be compared to anything on RIB as can the blistering speed witnessed on “Supremist.”
Slayer has returned to their roots on CI and blended it with Seasons type melody “Catatonic” and GHUA styled intensity and heaviness “Cult,” in what is easily their best work since their career defining release. It is a must have for any thrash metal fanatic looking for something that reminiscent of the good ole days of the Slaytanic Wehrmacht.