Slayer don’t need presentation. Everyone knows the story of this legendary band and the recent facts that saw the departure of Dave Lombardo and the shocking death of Jeff Hanemann. Tom Araya and Kerry King anyway didn’t give up and joined the old friend Paul Bostaph on drums and Gary Holt from Exodus on guitar.
‘Repentless’ is the 12th studio album after six years of silence, the first under the giant label Nuclear Blast that made a massive advertising campaign.
Slayer decided to go through the safe road, forging an album that shows all the faces of the american combo of the last years. So we have the traditional up-tempos like the title-track, ‘Implode’, ‘Atrocity Vendor’, and ‘You Against You’, that are for sure the best stuff: fast, energetic, powerful and neckbreaking like the good old days.
But when the pace slows down, here the troubles: tracks like ‘Vices’, ‘Chasing Death’, ‘Piano Wire’ (sorry to say that, it’s the last song written by Jeff) and the atrocious ‘Pride in Prejudice’ are often boring, pointless and sounds like filler.
In general the guitar riffing of Kerry King (Gary Holt, who is still a session member, just performs some cool solos) is good, but very far form any excellence, almost like he felt lost without is old pal. Tom Araya performance is one of the best things of the album: the angry is still there, even if his voice is less furious and more expressive.
The production (as also the awesome digipack of the cd) are almost at the state of the art, but we can’t expect anything less from Nuclear Blast.
‘Repentless’ flows away: left some traces, but nothing that will really survives to the test of time. We can just hope that those guys has still some bullet on the barrel.
“Playing this shit is all that keeps me alive
I leave it all on the road living on the stage
This is my life where I kill it everyday
So take you shot, bottom’s up, this is no lie
I’ll be beating this guitar ’til the day I die
Live fast, on high
Repentless, let it ride”
78/100 c (Dan Ross)
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