Metal rarely got attention from respectable institutions during its early days. As officially designated social enemies and rebels, metalheads were perceived as being antagonists of such institutions who did not necessarily agree with their basic principles like the hippies did. However, with the lightening of metal this has changed, and academics, the corporate world and now the Smithsonian Museum have taken an interest in metal.
Slayer: The Origins of Thrash in San Francisco, CA is a five-minute video which looks at the creation of speed metal as it happened in San Francisco, California, following up on the work of bands like Motorhead, Satan and Blitzkrieg in the UK when hybridized with hardcore punk. It shows the respectable institutions of society recognizing not just Slayer, and speed metal, but that a thriving and viable sub-culture has existed within their society for almost thirty years.
Tags: slayer, smithsonian museum, Speed Metal, Thrash
3 thoughts on “Smithsonian Magazine explores metal with Slayer: The Origins of Thrash in San Francisco, CA”
I’m just curious, back in the 80s when Reign in Blood and Master of Puppets were out, do you think speed metal fans considered Slayer and Metallica participants of the same subgenre, or would they have different audiences??
I mean, if you add cookie monster vocals to Reign in Blood, you pretty much have a death metal album no? I read somewhere that Dave Mustaine clamored to boicott “noise metal”, still don’t know if he was directing his disapproval against Slayer and the speed-death metal hybrids or music like Bathory and Morbid Angel. Any thought about this ?
Slayer’s rhythm riffs and some of the drumming pretty much are death metal. Same with early Kreator riffs. They’re both not as death metal as Possessed but they’re close. Also Dave Lombardo is a better drummer than triggered, sample replaced death metal guys such as George Kollias.
All of us bought Slayer AND Metallica AND Exodus AND Megadeth AND Onslaught AND Kreator AND Destruction AND Anthrax AND Possessed AND Nuclear Assault AND Hallow’s Eve albums, etc, etc, up to and during 1986. As long as it raged and offered something a little different.
Maybe we thought of Sacrifice, Possessed, Slayer, Dark Angel, Death, Blessed Death, etc as being more towards the death metal side, but most of the fans / friends I met back then, we all liked most of the bands.
The divide between fans wanting clean speed metal like Anthrax, Flotsam & Jetsam I guess maybe did start happening around 1986, as those kinds of fans would laugh at Sodom and Bathory, while we wouldn’t.
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