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National Day of Slayer

Posted by Floppie on 2009-05-15
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National Day of Slayer

International Day of Slayer

On June 6th, Hessians worldwide come together to do something upon which we can all agree – listening to Slayer! Finally, one of the most dismissed cultural groups in the world has a holiday to call its own. Join us in our cause to stand unified in our celebration of metal music and let us prove to the rest of society that we too have a voice.

Who is Slayer

Slayer is a band from California. Their music has come to epitomize Satanic speed metal music in the latter half of the 20th century. Their 1986 album, “Reign in Blood” is one of the single most influential metal albums of all time, typified by the modern classic “Angel of Death”.

How to Celebrate
  • Listen to Slayer at full blast in your car.
  • Listen to Slayer at full blast in your home.
  • Listen to Slayer at full blast at your place of employment.
  • Listen to Slayer at full blast in any public place you prefer.

DO NOT use headphones! The objective of this day is for everyone within earshot to understand that it is the National Day of Slayer. National holidays in America aren’t just about celebrating; they’re about forcing it upon non-participants.

Taking that participation to a problematic level
  • Stage a “Slay-out.” Don’t go to work. Listen to Slayer.
  • Have a huge block party that clogs up a street in your neighborhood. Blast Slayer albums all evening. Get police cruisers and helicopters on the scene. Finish with a full-scale riot.
  • Spray paint Slayer logos on churches, synagogues, or cemeteries.
  • Play Slayer covers with your own band (since 99% of your riffs are stolen from Slayer anyway).
  • Kill the neighbor’s dog and blame it on Slayer

This sounds pretty win. I think I know what I’m doing on June 6.

Rockstar Mayhem poster

Rockstar Mayhem poster

…was incredible. I scored two tickets, and gave the second one to my dad – who also had a great time. He’s been trying to see Disturbed with me for like a year and a half now, so I was glad to take him. We got there a bit on the early side; the main stage bands weren’t playing yet, so we wandered around for a while, grabbed a few things off the “free stuff” table, each picked up a T-shirt, etc. Then, when the doors finally opened to the main stage, we went in and grabbed our seats – eighth row, dead center. Fucking awesome.

Brent Hinds of Mastodon

Brent Hinds of Mastodon

The first guys up were Mastodon. When I say first, I mean first on the main stage – we didn’t really bother going around and watching anybody on the other stages, although what we could hear from a distance sounded pretty good. Anyway, Mastodon. They were pretty good – I’ve listened to some of their recorded stuff, and while it’s not really my box of candy, they are definitely a group of skilled musicians, and I have to respect that. The drummer was really good – incredibly fast feet. The guitarists were very good; and, while the lyrics weren’t really comprehensible, they tell a story – each album is basically an epic journey of some sort.

Dragonforce Rockstar Mayhem wallpaper

DragonForce Rockstar Mayhem wallpaper

Then, up came DragonForce. I’d heard varying things about them – but all evidence leads to the idea that they’re basically a joke band; they like heavy music, and they decided to make a band just for kicks, and they ended up hitting it big. They’re a six-piece outfit; two guitarists (both lead, mind you), the drummer, the bassist, the keyboardist, and the lead singer. They came out toting a goofy sense of humor, incredibly fast instrumentals (upstaged Mastodon, for sure), a funny intro, and a very busy stage presence. They keyboardist, for example, didn’t really do a lot of playing – rather, he did a lot of jumping around and putting on a ridiculous visual show; such as rocking the keyboard from side to side. They were definitely good, and I’d say see them at least once just so you get a chance to witness the spectacle.

Disturbed at the Rockstar Mayhem festival

John Moyer and Dan Donegan of Disturbed

Enter Disturbed – the main reason we were there. There was an hour break after DragonForce, so the crowd was getting a bit restless – then the lights went down and Disturbed’s signature haunting pre-song melody started playing. A guy dressed as a sanitarium orderly wheels something out on a hand truck – and we quickly realize that it’s frontman David Draiman, in a muzzle and straightjacket. The orderly unties him and runs – David pulls off the muzzle and throws it aside, then Dan and John start wailing into Perfect Insanity as they and Mike come out onto the stage.

Disturbed put on an absolutely incredible show – my dad was completely wowed. Not that I expected them to be bad; this was the fourth time I’ve seen them and I swear they get better with every show. They put a bit more variation on Down With the Sickness (the last song of the set, naturally, since it’s their biggest hit) with each show – between pausing with the lights down right before the intro gets heavy, going snare only toward the end of the song, etc. The effect is pretty cool. Anyway, as always, kudos to the guys at Disturbed on a great show – I look forward to seeing them again ;)

Slipknot stock photo

Slipknot stock photo

Finally, time for Slipknot. Their first tour in roughly two and a half years – since Corey Taylor and Jim Root released Come What(ever) May with Stone Sour. Quite a few people left after Disturbed, which was a bit disappointing for me – must have been a bit more disappointing for Slipknot. However, the people who left missed out. They put on one hell of a show – between all the fire, the masks, the incredibly heavy music…the list goes on.

Corey Taylor of Slipknot

Corey Taylor of Slipknot

For those who don’t know them very well, here’s a bit of background for Slipknot. There are nine of them. They all wear masks (see the stock photo above), never showing their faces on stage. Their drummer, Joey Jordison, is the centerpiece of the band – sitting parallel to Corey Taylor’s vocals rather than underneath as rhythm. They also have two other percussionists – Chris Fehn and Shawn Crahan – who each have a set of gigantic toms and (yes, this really is true) empty beer kegs. They also have two guitarists, James Root and Mick Thomson. Then, finally, they have Paul Gray on bass; Craig Jones on samples; and Sid Wilson on turntables.

Corey Taylor and Mick Thomson

Corey Taylor and Mick Thomson

Now, on with the show. After playing a few incredibly heavy songs, including The Blister Exists (the same song they opened with on their 9.0: Live tour), we hear from Corey a bit. As it turns out, Sid Wilson had to be brought out in a wheelchair because he jumped off the stack of speakers behind the band on the first show of the tour and broke both his feet – he showed the crowd the boots. In addition, Joey (their incredible drummer) was playing with one broken ankle – he had to be helped up the steps to his kit. Slipknot has a history of on-stage injuries, including a couple times where band members lit themselves on fire before being told by authorities that, if they did that again, they would be incarcerated for attempted suicide.

We left a couple songs before the end – they were just starting to play People = Shit when we got out of the amphitheater – because it was late and my dad wanted to bail before the major parts of the crowd to avoid traffic. I would’ve loved to stay for the whole thing though – that really was an amazing show.

Rockstar Mayhem wallpaper

Rockstar Mayhem wallpaper

Anyway, that’s about the size of it. If the lineup for next year’s Rockstar Mayhem festival is as sweet as this year’s was, I’ll be going again. Fuck Ozzfest – this blew it away. Especially since Sharon’s blowing Ozzfest all to hell with her hardcore cockhattery.