Melding their NWOBHM influences with their sinister intentions and hella fast speed Metal, Slayer hit the scene as a band in 1981. After their recorded debut on Metal Blade’s Metal Massacre II, and then later that year – Show No Mercy would arrive on December 3rd, 1983, also via Metal Blade. This was less than a month after being hastily recorded. Few understood how important a debut or band would become.
Show No Mercy has some early classic Slayer songs, and some of the key elements of the sound of the band were in place from the very first notes of the opening track. Fast, fast riffs, heavy metal bombast, Tom Araya’s comically crazy, high screams, lyrics about Satan, and of course, murderers. Slayer immediately sounded different than any other early Thrash Metal band, a leader of an emerging genre with Metallica and Exodus was a centrifuge of classic metal, sinister themes, and more technical beats from the wunderkind drummer Dave Lombardo!
The band definitely improved over the next few albums and Reign In Blood is the album most fans think of when they think of Slayer, but Show No Mercy was a crucial early piece in their history. The album not only launched Slayer’s career, but “Black Magic” and “Die By the Sword” stayed in the set list for years and years, including the farewell tours. Metal Blade has pulled out the stops for a deluxe reissue of the record you can order at the link below. We have written a lot about the end of Slayer here and here. Throw the horns up and blast some Slayer today!
Buy Slayer music and merch here:
Read DX Ferris’ excellent Slayer Book:
Listen to the Slayer podcast, also by DX Ferris:
WORDS BY KEEFY