Slayer - Decade of Aggression: Live
Thrash Metal
Disc 1: 11 songs (50:57) Disc 2: 10 songs (38:28)
Release year: 1991
Slayer, Universal/Republic Records Homepage
Reviewed by Shane
Archive review

I saw Slayer live in 1996 when I was fifteen and at the peak of my Slayer mania. I made sure that I was positioned right at the front of crowd closest to the stage and I won’t mince words when I say that it was not a pleasant experience. In fact, I got my ass kicked. Sure, I was able to hold my position throughout the whole experience, constantly fighting off elbows, fists and other flailing body parts with my own fists, while Slayer played on, obviously enjoying being the soundtrack to people trying to kill each other. How was the concert? Hard to say, I was too busy fighting for my life the whole time. Thankfully, I can revisit the live Slayer experience, sans the beating, anytime with Decade of Aggression.

Decade of Aggression captures the raw intensity of Slayer’s music and their live performance perfectly. The sound quality is an honest replication of Slayer live, which means that it lacks a lot of the polish found in re-dubbed, less than honest live recordings. This however, is not a problem as the album still sounds great and all the energy, intensity and aggression has been kept in tact.

The track listing is extremely solid as well, with most of Slayer’s classics represented. I found that disc one contained most of my favourites, such as The Anti-Christ, War Ensemble and of course, Angel of Death. Make no mistake though, without disc two, this live compilation would be somewhat lacking.

Kerry King and Jeff Hanneman play as fast as they do sloppy, however for the brand of thrash metal they play, their style suits it perfectly. Dave Lombardo does an excellent job of pounding the skins into oblivion and Tom Araya is as intense as ever. He barks and growls his way through every track, thankfully keeping the shrieks to a minimum. The Anti-Christ sounds so much better when Araya screams the chorus instead of shrieking it. Angel of Death still features a shriek at the beginning of the song but this is a good thing because the song really wouldn’t be the same without it.

I would strongly recommend Decade of Aggression to any Slayer fan (though I would wonder why they don’t already have it?) and to any fan of thrash in general. Each song is an improvement in one way or another on the original, especially South of Heaven and Mandatory Suicide as they are from the South of Heaven album, which I find quite lifeless. This album truly captures and properly represents a decade of lightning fast riffs, blazing solos and of course the key ingredient to it all, aggression.

Killing Songs :
The Anti-Christ, War Ensemble, South of Heaven, Raining Blood, Dead Skin Mask, Mandatory Suicide, Angel of Death, Die by the Sword, and Black Magic
Shane quoted No Quote
Other albums by Slayer that we have reviewed:
Slayer - Repentless reviewed by Goat and quoted 70 / 100
Slayer - Haunting the Chapel reviewed by Tony and quoted no quote
Slayer - World Painted Blood reviewed by Goat and quoted 76 / 100
Slayer - Divine Intervention reviewed by Goat and quoted 88 / 100
Slayer - Undisputed Attitude reviewed by Goat and quoted no quote
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