10 Songs, 42 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Slayer’s fifth studio album welds the blinding tempos of their earliest music to the pure heaviness of 1988’s South of Heaven, augmenting the thrashers’ Satanist obsessions with more earth-bound evil, like urban violence (“Expendable Youth”) and Ed Gein’s murderous grave-robbing (“Dead Skin Mask,” with its spooky spoken intro). The almost Metallica-esque title epic builds up from funereal Black Sabbath doom, but the machine-gunned blitzkrieg “War Ensemble” was immediately embraced by Desert Storm soldiers, who took its “not a drill” warning to heart.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Slayer’s fifth studio album welds the blinding tempos of their earliest music to the pure heaviness of 1988’s South of Heaven, augmenting the thrashers’ Satanist obsessions with more earth-bound evil, like urban violence (“Expendable Youth”) and Ed Gein’s murderous grave-robbing (“Dead Skin Mask,” with its spooky spoken intro). The almost Metallica-esque title epic builds up from funereal Black Sabbath doom, but the machine-gunned blitzkrieg “War Ensemble” was immediately embraced by Desert Storm soldiers, who took its “not a drill” warning to heart.

TITLE TIME

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