Sunday, December 10, 2006

Number one

Finally the top hard rock/metal album of 1986. This was a good year commercially for this type of music and a good year for quality albums as well even if those two categories did not contain all of the same albums. Yet the top album of the year came from a young band from LA. Of course number one is..........

Slayer-Reign in blood

If Metallica are to be recognized for doing enough to sustain a longer album then Slayer should get a lot of recognition for doing a lot in a short time frame. Seriously, this album is less than half an hour long yet you will not feel cheated because they do a lot in that time. King and Hanneman are not great guitarists by any stretch yet they make every note count here. I don't here the bass, but Tom Araya makes his contribution by giving one of the most aggressive set of vocals ever done. He just goes at it like a maniac and delivers every line like he wants to rip your head off. The real backbone though are the drums and it helps when your drummer sounds like three guys playing. Dave Lombardo's playing is unreal at times as he is playing like thunder and constantly in motion. Yet all these parts come together and make not just the best album of 1986, not just Slayer's best album, but the best speed metal album of all time. This album is just crazy and frantic yet scores by being so direct and sure of itself. Well deserving of best hard rock/metal album of 1986.

***So there is the top ten. Still two more days of 1986 awards to go. Monday the "Golden Turd of 1986" will be announced. Now remember this is not a worst album award. It would be easy to pick on some unknown band who put out a stinker. Instead I created this award to show my disappointment for someone who should have done a good album, but chose to toss out a bomb instead. So it's either someone who had a good past and did a bad album or someone who received a lot of hype and did a bad album. A hint would be to easy so instead I will list the nominees as in the bands I considered for this award. Here are the nominees in alphabetical order.

Judas Priest-Turbo
King Kobra-Thrill of a lifetime
Krokus-Change of address
Raven-The pack is back
Vinnie Vincent Invasion-s/t

***As a separate entry on Monday I will also do the "Biggest Improvement of 1986". Slayer were a serious consideration for this award as well. In my 1985 awards Slayer's Hell Awaits just missed out on making my top ten, yet in 1986 they hit the top album. A big improvement for sure, but not my choice for most improved. However my choice is another LA speed metal band.


Anonymous Joerg said...

You don't appreciate exactly how fast and precise they play until you hear Reign In Blood followed by a real fast album. Then you will have that: Hey, was that always so slow? moment.

4:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was never much of a Slayer fan, but could appreciate this album. I dig Kerry King and Tom Araya.

As for Golden Turd of '86...My vote has to go with Turbo. The simple fact that they chose to throw the keys in there ruined Priest for me for a long time...

5:41 AM  
Blogger bob_vinyl said...

I agree that Reign in Blood is the best speed metal album of all time. No question. There isn't another Slayer album I ever pull out, but this one does get played for sure. It's not as good an album as Master of Puppets in general, but as pure speed metal goes, nothing else touches it.

I also vote for Turbo for the Golden Turd. It was so weird that they put out such a blatantly commercial album when they'd never been that kind of band. They were one of the last bands I expected it from. And then, despite the commercial success of Turbo and it's appeal outside of the metalhead world, they returned to form (albeit not top form) with their next album, Ram It Down.

8:42 AM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

joerg-Exactly and some bands tried to copy this style and couldn't come close.

Rockdog-The Golden Turd is about twelve hours from being revealed.

Bob vinyl-The main reason I rate Reign over Master is this. There is no point during Reign where I hear a song and think that it could have been any better. However on Master I do get a little bored during "The thing that should not be" and to a lesser extent on "Leper Messiah".

9:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm glad you 'fessed up to not thinking Thingie is the best song ever done. Now when I say so, I'm going to point to you as my back-up, hopefully before I get pummelled.

11:37 AM  
Blogger Ray Van Horn, Jr. said...

number one, I actually hold a guilty pleasure for the Vinnie Vincent Invasion's noisy, rackety, poorly written, full of arrogant solos, and that's probably why I used to listen to it before bed in high school for almost a month!

Of course Reign in Blood wins this year as it does the decade for thrash album and perhaps for all-time in that subgenre. To this day, I'm still floored by the fluid precision of this album. Not even Slayer has been able to duplicate its perfection.

11:29 AM  

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