Hell Awaits

So another day and another Slayer show. This will part three of the farewell tour for me and seemingly the last time I will see Slayer live. But I’m pretty sure that at some point within the next twelve months part four (at the very least) will have been a thing.

As this was their “last UK tour” we decided to do as many as we possibly could. Damnation in Leeds last Saturday already ruled out London and tomorrow in Newcastle was a no go as we had tickets already for Within Temptation. Glasgow on Monday would’ve meant using more holidays than I had left, so everything had to be within the eleven days I had off.

At one point Cardiff last Monday was a strong contender. It was the last one we were due to get tickets for and as we were debating the practicalities or adding the Welsh date Slayer were announced for Hellfest in France next year, and subsequently their appearance at Graspop has been revealed. So we ruled that one out.

There is definitely room for them at a British festival and more than likely one not too far away from home. Bloodstock in August still have a headline band to announce, even though the organisers have publicly dismissed that outcome.

I think they’ll end up a Download, which will be a shame really to see their legacy end with a 60 minute slot in a soggy East Midlands field and I daylight, when the full effects of that phenomenal stage show will be negated. All three main stage headliners have been announced, so a band of Slayer’s calibre would now, in theory, either be headlining the second stage or take up the special guest slot below Tool, Def Leppard or Slipknot. I’d have preferred a full whistled and bells headline performance at the more intimate Bloodstock as a way to say farewell the UK. Time will tell.

Until this run I wasn’t expecting to see Slayer on another arena stage ever again over here. When thrash metal seemed to be at its most popular in the early 90’s seeing Slayer on this size stage in the UK was a given. That era saw Slayer on the Clash of the Titans jaunt, Megadeth Oxidizing the Nations and Metallica since their Justice day’s all gracing the arenas.

I saw Slayer in the Manchester Arena back in 2004 on the first Unholy Alliance trip and 2006 on Unholy Alliance Chapter II, but after that the venues in subsequent tours seemed to be downgraded visit after visit. The last few venues in have seen them in have been halls with somewhere in the region of three thousand. And most of them didn’t sell out anywhere as quickly as these farewell shows.

As with Dublin, the majority of Birmingham’s nosebleed seats were out of use so the crowd was less than the venues 16 thousand capacity, but still an improvement on the 3 thousand Academy venue that they played back in 2015 and it’s only a mile up the road. I fully expect the same later in the countries biggest arena.

Hell Awaits is from the bands second album from 1985. I’m not usually one for fan filmed recordings if their is another, more official version and I nearly posted the track from the War at the Warfield DVD, but I saw this from the Dublin show I was at last week and the quality is very good.

See you at a Slayer show in 2019?


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