6 rare Slayer songs we need them to play at their comeback shows

Slayer live 2018
(Image credit: Getty Images/Steve Thorne/Redferns)

Well, who'd have thought it? Five years on from Slayer's final show and barely weeks after Kerry King finally unveiled his solo project, the thrash metal legends have announced they will reunite for a number of US festival appearances later this year including Aftershock, Riot Fest and Louder Than Life

But what will they play? It's fair to say we can't imagine them dropping Angel Of Death or Raining Blood from the setlists any time soon, but with 12 studio albums to draw from and a collection of some of the greatest thrash metal anthems on the planet, we can't help but hope that they might dust off a few live rarities for their comeback. 

That in mind, we've assembled six songs we sincerely hope the band consider for their comeback sets - excluding anything that the band performed regularly in their farewell tour. These were our picks... 

Metal Hammer line break

Bloodline (God Hates Us All, 2001)

A Slayer song on a Dracula movie soundtrack - it just sounds perfect, doesn't it? Granted, Dracula 2000 is a crap movie, but Slayer's contribution to the OST drips with glorious menace and some of the most insidious lyrics in the band's canon, trading out explicit horror for lurking danger. Last played in 2017, Bloodline is proof that Slayer don't need to go at 200mph to be the fiercest of the Big Four. 

Cult (Christ Illusion, 2006) 

With Dave Lombardo back in the mix - temporarily - Slayer produced some of their finest material in over a decade on Christ Illusion. But while Jihad remained an infrequent fixture in Slayer's sets, the album's other major cut, Cult was dropped from sets after 2010. Given the sheer incendiary force of the song though, we can't understand why, the song taking unambiguous swipes at the role of religion in conflict, Slayer flicking the 'v' at the whole idea with simple but effective lines like "I've made my choice...666!"

Here Comes The Pain (1999)

Like many classic metal bands, Slayer weren't exactly having a great time at the end of the 90s. Nu metal ruled the roost and the less said about Diabolus In Musica the better, but that doesn't mean the band weren't still capable of pulling out absolute gems. Another (relative) slow-burner recorded for now-defunct wrestling powerhouse WCW, Here Comes The Pain is like a predator lying in wait, the sudden bursts of fury perfectly set against looming, low-end guitars that rumble the guts and set the nerves on edge. Who said wrestling never did anything for metal?

Haunting The Chapel (Haunting The Chapel, 1984)

Slayer might have released their debut album Show No Mercy in 1983, but it seems it was follow-up EP Haunting The Chapel that had the most galvanising effect on the wider metal scene, inspiring everyone from members of Bolt Thrower and Death to Tobias Forge. Chemical Warfare remains one of Slayer's most-played songs and Captor Of Sin made some rare appearances in the band's 2019 sets, but the EP's title track hasn't been played in over 20 years. More's the pity; it's a great demonstration of how Slayer had found their footing by 1984 and would be a perfect bonus to slip in to commemorate the release's 40th anniversary. 

Fictional Reality (Divine Intervention, 1994)

With Lombardo out, Paul Bostaph took up the kit on 1994's Divine Intervention. Bostaph's clatter was put to the test across the record as Slayer stuck to their guns and produced viscerally charged thrash, but it's Fictional Reality that perhaps best showcases Bostaph's contribution to the band's sound, a pervasive wall of percussion giving King and Hanneman plenty to skitter across. Played only once in the band's career, Fictional Reality begs to get another chance for live carnage. 

Disorder (Judgement Night OST, 1993)

Given the now-legendary reputation the OST for Judgement Night now has for setting the scene for nu metal and the intersection of metal and hip hop, you can't help but wonder if Slayer regret teaming up with Ice-T for a fast and furious covers medley of The Exploited. We doubt it: the results speak for themselves in how Slayer take the clear influence of UK82 and show just how far they can take it, taking the original songs' scrappiness and giving it a militaristic makeover. Given they apparently only ever played the medley twice, the chances of this one popping up are Infinitesimally small, but we can hope. 

Rich Hobson

Staff writer for Metal Hammer, Rich has never met a feature he didn't fancy, which is just as well when it comes to covering everything rock, punk and metal for both print and online, be it legendary events like Rock In Rio or Clash Of The Titans or seeking out exciting new bands like Nine Treasures, Jinjer and Sleep Token.