Slayer: Hell Awaits (Metal Blade) | Under The Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Wednesday, January 19th, 2022  


Hell Awaits

Metal Blade

Nov 29, 2021 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

On their sophomore studio album, Southern Californian thrash metal godfathers Slayer eschewed the dingy production quality of 1983’s lo-fi Show No Mercy for a fuller, far more vicious sound, ultimately resulting in the genre classic Hell Awaits. While not necessarily the monumental metal phenomenon that was Reign in Blood, Hell Awaits laid bare the formula that the group would continue to perfect over the following decade, complete with Kerry King and the late Jeff Hanneman’s shredding and spidering guitars, coupled with the group’s signature lyrical blend of monsters and maniacs. While far heavier acts have since made their respective marks on the scene, the sensation of Hell Awaits remains raw, its impact a semi-melodic sucker punch to the gut.

Inclusions such as the opening title track, “Kill Again,” and “Necrophiliac” exhilarate, frontman Tom Araya’s throat-blistering vocals saturating the roaring backdrop in an adrenaline-filled rage. The album carries with it a fresh intensity, upon which the group would expand with the subsequent Reign in Blood, thus setting the stage for the savage musical revolution to come. Hell Awaits is an unrivaled classic, plumbing depths of darkness and depravity far deeper and wider than many groups had attempted before it, remaining as fierce today with this new 2021 reissue as it was nearly four decades ago. (

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