Slayer, Slayer, Slayer, Slayer... Chants could be heard across the venue and throughout the parking lot. The deafening screams faintly reminiscent of ancient Tuvan throat singing with the hollows of abysmal torture added for texture.
The pounding of the double bass made every hand stretch out in salute, then the crack of Kerry King's guitar, sent the crowd into rhythmic roars. Tom Araya's voice crests high above the thunderous waves crashing down on the fans like a blood sacrifice, purifying each soul. This savior’s voice rages deeply, like an angel on fire with harsh undertones dredged from the depths of the abyss.
High atop the stage, Paul Bostaph set the tempo, a maestro of destruction leading his soldiers into the spiraling rage of the mosh pit. Moshing and churning in old-school fashion, young and old alike, were driven like bulls into a mad cow frenzy.
Thrash metal band Slayer has been stealing souls and destroying eardrums since 1981 when bassist/singer Tom Araya, and mammoth heathen of a guitarist Kerry King joined forces. Gary Holt, originally of Exodus, and Paul Bostaph joined later, coalescing an iconic sound that has both challenged societal norms and stood the test of time. Standing tall, Slayer still leads the thrash brigade with a heavy, unyielding sound that other bands still try hard to emulate.
Leading up to the nights main event were sets by Cannibal Corpse, Amon Amarth and Lamb of God. Each act raised the energy higher in anticipation of the gods of thrash hitting the stage. Lamb of God tore up the scene, antagonizing the crowd in the wake of the 15th anniversary rerelease of their major label debut Ashes of the Wake.
We lived this experience, returning with a deep feeling of satisfaction and a bangover that we won’t soon forget. We’d like to send out a huge thank you to iHeartRadio and Live Nation for providing the Alibi team with great seats and a photo pass that allowed us to bring you closer to the action. So scroll on and live vicariously through our work.
As the set ended and the Angel of Death sang his last chord, an emotional Tom Araya approached the mic to solemnly thank Albuquerque, noting that he would miss us all. We will miss you, too and you will rock our souls forever!