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I have a semi busy life so I generally do very short album reviews. To do this I try to generalize all the songs into categories. Describe all the thrashers in one paragraph, all the ballads in one paragraph ect. Talk about musical traits shared across the album. Maybe describe its importance and its emotional impact. I generally try to keep them short applying these 3 tactics as I see need. Unfortunately this doesn't give me time to give proper praise and description of individual tracks beyond maybe listing them as a standout or using them as a specific example of dark lyrics, guitar speed etc. So I decided when I do an album I'll also do reviews for associated singles. Now we've established why I'm reviewing this after I've already reviewed the album.
Raining Blood is probably Slayer's most popular song. Its a fan favorite and it is a great example of what makes Slayer what they are instead just another thrash band. It starts with a haunting sliding guitar and a light rain effect that gives a haunting state of mind. Immediately after this the guitar comes in; fast and demonic. It will go through a few different riffs in this time including one of the fastest most chaotic riffs Slayer has ever written right before it crashes into the vocals. The guitar will continue with more quick aggressive riffs before going into a small slowed downed break that suddenly rips into an aggressive screech squeal solo that will end the song (well actually there is a storm effect that follows the solo but I think you understand what I mean) both guitars actually join in on the solo giving it an uncompeteable amount of driving force with so much going you are strained to catch every note.
The lyrics are dark, violent and morbid. Seriously, if my interpretation of the lyrics is accurate then this is a track about the many souls in purgatory rising up into an unholy revolution and taking heaven by storm while the blood of of the fallen angels rains down upon the Earth. The vocal delivery is angry shouting that matches perfectly. The bass a deep quick force that rounds the song out and giving the necessary backbone with which this sound fest depends upon, after all even the most chaotic songs need some semblance of order and structure to be listenable and the bass provides it all too well being the unsung hero that holds it all together in an enjoyable format.
The drums, oh god the drums, to say fast and aggressive simply doesn't do it enough justice. Maybe if I had experience as a drummer I could give this a proper description but alas I simply cannot express the drumwork. The drumwork is precise, sitting on the edge of structure and chaos both adding to the atmosphere and volatility of this track but simultaneously keeping it from becoming little more then a pile of assorted riffs and wasted sonic aggression. The individual instrumental parts come together beautifully into a thrash song that fails to disappoint in any way.
Despite being feature on GH3 *shudders*, Raining Blood is the best and most innovative song off of the (almost) same-named album. The riffs are much more innovative than the other songs, and happen to be both catchy and evil-sounding. This, along with the aforementioned appearance, have been the main contribution to this being Slayers most popular song.
Bleeding through from Postmortem, RB starts out with, appropriately, the sound of rain. In the background, the guitar provides the dark atmosphere, while Dave Lombardo gives one of his rare thundering, but slow drum-beats. Then, comes in the main riff. This moment is roughly comparable to the opening of Hell Awaits (though not as great), the atmosphere of evil coming from this part really sets the mood in the right place. After that comes some more riffs, not quite so good, or nearly as fitting, but still good nonetheless, after that it goes pretty much into typical Slayer stuff.
One more thing going for this song, is that Tom Araya doesn't plague it that much with his boring vocal style. When he does come up he's much more tolerable than on the rest of the album, with a venomous voice that does a good, though not great job of fitting the atmosphere of the song.
The only complaint however, is the mandatory solo by King. I'm not particularly a fan of his style, and there could be a much better way to end the album than ANOTHER one of his solos. That said however, it doesn't ruin the song, and Hannemans riffing still remains excellent. This song is a great starting point for Slayer if you happen to be new to this type of music, and I'd recommend it to a noobie any day.
Raining Blood is Slayer’s most famous track of all time. This was the last track of their breakthrough album “Reign In Blood”. Slayer is a band that has good riffs but equally bad solos. Mindless, actually one could say. I love thrash but I am not going to mindlessly orgasm on every track that is made even if its by thrash giants Slayer themselves.
The track which is a continuation off the track "Postmortem" starts of with the signature Bay Area thrash style intro (drums and guitars starting simultaneously and the vocals joining in shortly after). This continues for around 50 seconds and then it suddenly stops. The sound of rain pouring can be heard for around 30 seconds and then comes Slayer if not thrash at its peak. The effect if rain pouring is shattered by Lombardo blasting away at his drums and Kerry as well as Jeff building up the intro of probably the riff that is thrash metal at its best. This riff is extremely fast paced and is indescribable. It’s hard to believe that this is the product of the same band, which had made this extremely boring track (up till now). The riff continues for a few seconds and just when the band manages to build up this atmosphere, which they have never been able to create, their weak point once again creeps in. The solos. One just cannot help but frustrated by this tiny ordeal. The good thing is the solo is quite short and the riff, which I talked about a few lines back, starts once again. First at a slower tempo but once again hitting it’s max during the chorus during which Araya sounds surprisingly good. But once again, yes again the soloing ruins it. The solos continue but then all of a sudden it stops, right in the middle of a solo and it seems the song has an abrupt ending but no, that’s not the case. Once gain you can hear that effect of rain pouring and this continues for a minute.
This track could have been so much better if it started straight from the part where the build up to the riff starts and if they removed the part after the chorus of the track. This is exactly what another band, Vader did while covering this track in their “Lead Us EP” and I the cover tons more than the original version. It’s simply just because of the riff that Kerry came up with is the reason why I am giving this track 50%. If it weren’t for the riff, this track wouldn’t have gotten more than 20% in my book.
This is probably one of the most well known songs of 'Slayer', maybe even one of the most well known thrash songs ever, justifiably. This intimidating hymn is the closing track of one of the most evil, intense, brutal and influential thrash albums ever made. So yeah, only by it's honorable capacity you can guess that this is one has a pretty lethal riffage which isn't recommended for fragile necks!
This monster rushes immediately with tremolo picked riffing, not longer 'Araya' whips intensively the lyrics in extremely fast tempo, and suddenly everything stops! Did they lost their power? Did their right hand had suddenly exploded and flied away to china due to their continuous riff annihilation in the former twenty four minutes of 'Reign In Blood'? Hell no.
Suddenly comes a sound sample of rain (which raining blood, I guess) and after that comes a topnotched, quality, evil riff which builds a piece of terrifying atmosphere. Then the riffing played at breakneck speed again and not later comes another awesome catchy riff, evil as the former one. There are some tempo changes later and different variations of the former riffs and chaotic, destructive soloing which ends this song in a powerful way.
Overall, well composed song, great structure and the riffage is just excellent. One of Slayer's best songs, and an excellent way to close one of the most bloody thrash albums ever made.