Slayer's Reign in Blood (33 1/3)

Reign in Blood

Praise for the series

It was only a matter of time before a clever publisher realized that there is an audience for whom
Exile on Main Street
Electric Ladyland
are as significant and worthy of study as
The Catcher in the Rye
…. The series … is freewheeling and eclectic, ranging from minute rock-geek analysis to idiosyncratic personal celebration—
The New York Times Book Review

Ideal for the rock geek who thinks liner notes just aren’t enough—
Rolling Stone

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These are for the insane collectors out there who appreciate fantastic design, well-executed thinking, and things that make your house look cool. Each volume in this series takes a seminal album and breaks it down in startling minutiae. We love these. We are huge nerds—

A brilliant series…each one a work of real love—

Passionate, obsessive, and smart—

Religious tracts for the rock ’n’ roll faithful—

[A] consistently excellent series—

We … aren’t naive enough to think that we’re your only source for reading about music (but if we had our way … watch out). For those of you who really like to know everything there is to know about an album, you’d do well to check out Continuum’s “33 1/3” series of books.—

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Also available in this series

Dusty in Memphis
by Warren Zanes

Forever Changes
by Andrew Hultkrans

by Sam Inglis

The Kinks Are The Village Green Preservation Society
by Andy Miller

Meat Is Murder
by Joe Pernice

The Piper at the Gates of Dawn
by John Cavanagh

Abba Gold
by Elisabeth Vincentelli

Electric Ladyland
by John Perry

Unknown Pleasures
by Chris Ott

Sign ‘O’ the Times
by Michaelangelo Matos

The Velvet Underground and Nico
by Joe Harvard

Let It Be
by Steve Matteo

Live at the Apollo
by Douglas Wolk

by Allan Moore

OK Computer
by Dai Griffiths

Let It Be
by Colin Meloy

Led Zeppelin IV
by Erik Davis

Armed Forces
by Franklin Bruno

Exile on Main Street
by Bill Janovitz

by Daphne Brooks

by J. Niimi

Pet Sounds
by Jim Fusilli

by Nicholas Rombes

by Eliot Wilder

Kick Out the Jams
by Don McLeese

by Hugo Wilcken

In the Aeroplane Over the Sea
by Kim Cooper

Music from Big Pink
by John Niven

Paul’s Boutique
by Dan LeRoy

by Ben Sisario

There’s a Riot Goin’ On
by Miles Marshall Lewis

Stone Roses
by Alex Green

Bee Thousand
by Marc Woodworth

The Who Sell Out
by John Dougan

Highway 61 Revisited
by Mark Polizzotti

by Mike McGonigal

The Notorious Byrd Brothers
by Ric Menck

Court and Spark
by Sean Nelson

69 Love Songs
by LD Beghtol

Songs in the Key of Life
by Zeth Lundy

Use Your Illusion I and II
by Eric Weisbard

Daydream Nation
by Matthew Stearns

Trout Mask Replica
by Kevin Courrier

Double Nickels on the Dime
by Michael T. Fournier

People’s Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm
by Shawn Taylor

by Don Breithaupt

Rid of Me
by Kate Schatz

Achtung Baby
by Stephen Catanzarite

If You’re Feeling Sinister
by Scott Plagenhoef

Let’s Talk About Love
by Carl Wilson

by David Smay

20 Jazz Funk Greats
by Drew Daniel

by Philip Shaw

Master of Reality
by John Darnielle

Reign in Blood

D.X. Ferris


The Continuum International Publishing Group Inc

80 Maiden Lane, New York, NY 10038

The Continuum International Publishing Group Ltd

The Tower Building, 11 York Road, London SE1 7NX

Copyright © 2008 by D.X. Ferris

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without the written permission of the publishers or their agents.

Cover art reprinted courtesy SonyBMG Music Entertainment Printed in Canada on 100% postconsumer waste recycled paper

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Ferris, D. X.

Reign in blood / D.X. Ferris.

p. cm. -- (33 1/3)

Includes bibliographical references.

eISBN 978-1-4411-8349-1

1. Slayer (Musical group) 2. Rock musicians--United States. 3. Slayer (Musical group) Reign in blood. I. Title. II. Series.

ML421.S612F47 2008



Table of Contents


Reign in Blood
, featuring original commentary from…


The Argument:
Fuckin’ Slayer

Talkin’ Thrash

“Metalstorm: Face the Slayer”

Slayer Guitarist Jeff Hanneman

Drummer Dave Lombardo

Singer-Bassist Tom Araya

Guitarist Kerry King

DJ-RR: The Producer, Rick Rubin. And the Label, Def Jam.

Engineer Andy Wallace

Recruiting New Blood




Bad Day at Black Rock

Def Metal: Slayer in the House



Reign in Blood
: The Songs and Their Impact

Reing in Blood
, in Summary

The Legacy

Notes, Asides, and Works Cited

1986, Slayer in the studio with
producer Rick Rubin, at Hit City West, Los Angeles. Top left: Rubin. Bottom, L to R: Jeff Hanneman, Dave Lombardo, Tom Araya, Kerry King. Photo © Glen E. Friedman (

2004, Slayer, covered in (fake) blood, after performing
Reign in Blood
in its entirety, as captured for the
Still Reigning
DVD. Photo by Kevin Estrada.


In memory of Professor Emeritus Ronald Forsythe, Nora Ferris, Lorna Ferris, Dave Moran, Vera Lehane, Dr. Bernard De Filippo, Vincent Roskovensky, and Sumner J. Ferris—sorry there’s no index, dad; it wasn’t my call.

Singular instruction and consultation: Alan Natali.

Thanks for planting seeds and opening doors: James G. Lakely, Bill Bennett, Greg Christiansen, Aaron Burgess, Jason Bracelin, Jason Pettigrew, Mike Shea, Pete Kotz, and Dan LeRoy.

Real music people if I’ve ever met any: Stigma, Michael Gallucci, and Sluggo.

Many kind people helped with this book; none of them had to. Thanks to everyone in the following pages, twice, at least. Slayer. Rick Rubin. Andy Wallace. Heidi Ellen Robinson-Fitzgerald. Julie Arkenstone. Eleanor Logan. The Three Kings of Metal Collectors: Spahr Schmitt, Jamie Walters, and Tony Alberts. Niklas
Slayer Collector (
). Paul at Bill
Peters. Matt Wardlaw. Jeff Lamm. Chris Bade. Maria Ferrero. Gabrielle Allen. Gabriella Page-Fort. Mike Palone. Jerry Graham. George Vallee. Betsey Cichoracki. Carl Schultz. Loana dP. Valencia. Tresa Sanders. Charles Elliot. Tom Wojcik. David Giffels. Dave Brenner. Mark Price. Dan Muro. Borders #63 (the general public doesn’t deserve you). Bill Adler. Danny Marianinho. Kevin Berve at Reel Efx, and Anthony “T.J.” Scaglione—sorry your chapters didn’t fit; they were good ones. Stacy Gueraseva. Whoever put together the
Slayer Ultra Bootleg Pack
. Brandon Marshall (
). Blood Metal Donor. Bonnie Angotti. Paul Hooper. Greg Van Krol. John Comprix. Killick. Kurt Brecht. Judy Gish at Caltrans. Patty Falk at Bowling Green State University Music Library & Sound Recordings Archives. Calvin College’s Hekman Library. The Akron Public Library (Fairlawn and Downtown). Also: Apeneck Sweeney. Chuck Cage, Audra Heaslip, and Sean O’Hara. Claudia, Mandy, Eric, and Alex. Nate. TM. Randy & Jennifer McFeely. Ed Rohrer. Matt Gorey. Donnie Iris. Everybody I forgot.
: Diamond Dave Herth, Kevin DuBrow, Bob Muldowney, and Mikey Offender. Metal people are good people. And extra thanks to Dr. David Barker, for making Slayer part of this series.

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