Slayer are a legendary thrash metal band formed in Huntington Park, California, in 1981. They are regarded as one of the "Big Four" of thrash metal, alongside Metallica, Megadeth, and Anthrax. Known for their aggressive and fast-paced music, Slayer quickly gained a reputation as one of the most extreme bands of their time.
Led by the distinctive vocals of Tom Araya, Slayer's early albums, such as Show No Mercy and Hell Awaits, were a lightning bolt of speed and aggression, featuring blistering guitar solos from Kerry King and Jeff Hanneman. Over the years, Slayer's sound evolved to incorporate more complex rhythms and darker themes, culminating in their masterpiece, Reign in Blood, widely considered one of the greatest metal albums of all time.
Slayer's live shows are legendary, with the band's high-energy performances and pyrotechnic displays earning them a reputation as one of the most intense live acts in the world. Despite numerous lineup changes over the years, Slayer's commitment to their uncompromising vision has never wavered, and they remain one of the most influential and respected bands in metal history.
Slayer's music has significantly impacted the development of thrash metal and the wider metal genre, inspiring countless bands in the decades since their formation. Their lyrics often deal with controversial and taboo subjects, such as Satanism, serial killers, and war, which have drawn criticism from some quarters but cemented their reputation as a band unafraid to push boundaries.
Throughout their career, Slayer released twelve studio albums, each of which showcased their technical prowess, innovative songwriting, and uncompromising attitude. Their final album, Repentless, was released in 2015 and marked the end of an era for the band following the tragic death of founding member Jeff Hanneman in 2013.
Despite their retirement, Slayer's legacy lives on, with their influence still felt in the metal scene today. Their combination of speed, aggression, and technical proficiency remains a benchmark for aspiring metal musicians, and their impact on the genre cannot be overstated. Slayer will always be remembered as one of the most important and influential bands in metal history, and their music will continue to inspire generations of fans for years to come.
Slayer's discography spans over three decades, and they have sold millions of records worldwide. Their songs, including Angel of Death, Raining Blood, and South of Heaven, are considered classics of the genre and have been covered by numerous other bands. Slayer has received widespread critical acclaim throughout their career and has been nominated for multiple Grammy Awards.
They were also inducted into the Hall of Heavy Metal History in 2019, a testament to their lasting impact on the genre. Slayer has also been involved in various philanthropic endeavors, supporting organizations such as the National Hemophilia Foundation and the Wounded Warrior Project. They have also been outspoken advocates for animal rights and were active supporters of PETA.