Tag Archives: Thrash metal

Jeff Hanneman – Slayer’s Shred Lord – 1964 to 2013

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Jeff Hanneman of Slayer, who died on May 2nd 2013 at 49 years old.

Sad news this morning – Slayer’s long-time guitar player and songwriter Jeff Hanneman has passed away at the age of 49.  The cause of death has been listed as liver failure, with many speculating that the guitarist’s brush with necrotizing fasciitis (following a spider bite) and the subsequent medication required to combat it will have played their part in his early passing.  So serious was this injury that it essentially sidelined Hanneman, compelling him to withdraw from Slayer’s regular touring schedule, with Exodus’ Gary Holt substituting for him from 2011 on.

Though the band’s Kerry King has long been the visual lynch pin of the band, Hanneman’s writing and – crucially – face-melting riffs are a large part of what made the band one of the Thrash Metal scene’s Big Four.   If you’re humming the rampaging chords from “Raining Blood” now, I can’t say as I blame you.

As my cable company have currently provided the 2010 Sofia Bulgaria show from the Big Four tour, replete with Slayer, I can think of no better way to remember the great guitarist’s blistering riffs and headbanging tunes.

RIP, Sir, RIP.

\M/ 

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October Thrashing Mad

In a move which can only confirm their reputation as the nicest Thrash-inspired UK outfit on the block, Yorkshire’s own Evile have confirmed a UK tour for October 2012, with a Sheffield show scheduled in positively indecent proximity to my birthday.  You might say utter coincidence – I’d like to think otherwise, obviously…

Evile lead guitarist Ol Drake

Ol Drake of Evile – fast fingers flying ferociously, don’t you know?

Nonetheless, what absolute legends.

If you’re unfamiliar with Evile – I can see that you might be – let’s do our best to remedy that by directing you to the video for their delightful track “Thrasher”.  Isn’t that just the most face-meltingly quick and bracing slice of Thrashy Metal goodness that you’ve heard all day?  It’s like the mid-eighties never went away and Metallica never made a duff record.  Ahem…

Like an oddly metallic, quite heavy comfort blanket – Evile!

It’s a weird thing to feel oddly comforted by music which is, on the face of it, quite abrasive and the proverbial middle-finger to provincial notions of safety and familiarity but Thrash/Neo-Thrash/Thrash Revival stuff is still as vital and exciting (and quite absurdly soothing) to me as it was back in the eighties when Slayer had dodgy mullets and the mighty Anthrax (always my favourite of the Big Four) were penning glorious odes to Judge Dredd.

I never quite got into Black Metal – the Cookie Monster vocals have been something of a sticking point for me – so Thrash is probably as musically extreme as I go.  Punky energy and occasionally politicised lyrics with the aural comfort blanket of 900 MPH guitar solos and Metal double-bass drums – what’s not to like?

To convince you further as to Evile’s status as princes amongst men and women, have a gander at guitarist Ol Drake fearlessly mashing up Judas Priest and Lady Gaga on YouTube with a version of “Born This Way”.  I’m sure that Mother Monster would approve…

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