Reign in Blood emphasizes Slayer’s nearly complete departure from NWOBHM roots. In fact, the last remaining cross-over imprints are only on the additional track, “Aggressive Perfector”, included in the 1998 reissue. In other words, this album begins the Slayer epoch of dissonance. Here the band march into the margins, with a level of fury steamrolling the genre sideways, inflicting legions of extreme metal imitators.
With aggressive structural progression and a signature speed — Hanneman and King effectively blend conflicting strands from hardcore/punk and heavy metal. Dissecting this intricate chaos mandates schooling in multiple extreme genres. But glad that appreciation only requires an ear for some atonal brew – of genre-bending twin guitar dissonance. The band simply accomplished what they actually state in Raining Blood — “abolish the rules made of stone”—and they did it while remaining grounded in that ever snowballing extreme metal roots.
Released on October 7th, 1986 – so today marks thirty two blood soaked years.