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Slayer, Megadeth Play Classic Albums for American Carnage Tour

Justina Villanueva

Gone are the days of Slayer frontman Tom Araya asking the crowd if they’re tired from lifting our beer glasses all night, if they’re into heavy metal or even if they”re into older women — “the kind that have f—ing maggots crawling out of their p—-s.” Also gone are the days of Araya headbanging. The most recognizable scream in all metal history, the first part of ‘Angel of Death’ — the live performance of that is also gone. A modern Slayer set consists of unabatedly playing songs.

On Aug. 12, when the thrash kings played with Megadeth and Testament at New Jersey’s Izod Center, the crowd couldn’t be more than content. With new songs ‘World Painted Blood’ and ‘Hate Worldwide,’ then all of ‘Seasons of the Abyss’ in its entirety, Slayer gave the crowd more than the $10 tickets were worth. They’re the kind of band that will forever appeal to the pre-teen youth (like metal’s favorite new blogger, Ezra Lux) and the people who grew up with the band in the early ’80s. There was also ‘South of Heaven’ and ‘Raining Blood’ — two songs it will be impossible to get tired of. I’m more familiar with those riffs and beats than I am with most of my close relatives.

Justina Villanueva

It’s incredible how well-trained a Slayer audience is. After the signature last song, ‘Angel of Death,’ was played, no one even tried to ask for an encore. They knew that the band would not turn around and bust out more songs.

Like Slayer, Megadeth also played an album in full. “Thank you! Well that was ‘Rust in Peace,’” Megadeth frontman Dave Mustaine told the audience. The band stepped off stage for a minute before returning for a couple more classics: ‘Peace Sells’ and ‘Symphony of Destruction.’ For ‘Head Crusher,’ Mustaine gave the audience instructions on how to sing along.

“I want to apologize for my manners. I never said hello. Good evening!” Mustaine said. He complained that their 70-minute slot wasn’t enough time for them to play. How do you choose what songs to play?!

Even though the Big Four tour couldn’t travel around in America, a DVD of the four bands (Metallica, Slayer, Megadeth and Anthrax) performing at Sonisphere is slated for release in late 2010.

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