California thrash metal veterans SLAYER became the first metal band other than METALLICA to make it into the Dutch Top 2000, the annual countdown which is broadcast every year between Christmas and New Year’s Eve. Dutch metalheads united and contributed heavily to the poll, which was based on a public vote, with “Angel Of Death” managing to make it to the No. 199 spot.
The past Monday (December 31), the countdown was aired was live on national radio and TV and video footage was captured of of the DJs headbanging and “slamming” in the studio while the SLAYER track was being played. Check out the clip below.
“Angel Of Death” is the opeing track on “Reign In Blood”, the third studio album and the major label debut by SLAYER.
“Reign In Blood” was released on October 7, 1986 through Def Jam Recordings. The album was the band’s first collaboration with record producer Rick Rubin, whose input helped the band’s sound evolve. Kerrang! magazine described the record as “the heaviest album of all time,” and a breakthrough in thrash metal and speed metal.
“Reign In Blood”‘s release was delayed because of concerns regarding its graphic artwork and lyrical subject matter. “Angel Of Death”, which refers to Josef Mengele and describes acts such as human experimentation that Mengele committed at the Auschwitz concentration camp, provoked allegations of Nazism. However, the bandmembers stated numerous times they do not condone Nazism, and are merely interested in the subject.
On the topic the controversy surrounding “Reign In Blood”‘s lyrical content, SLAYER guitarist Jeff Hanneman said, “‘Angel Of Death’ was a big problem. I remember getting a phone call after the album was done: Sony wasn’t going to release it. I remember being at home, pissed, throwing things. What the fuck? I didn’t think anything was wrong with ‘Angel Of Death’ or anything else we did, it’s a documentary! There’s no ‘Heil Hitler’ or ‘white people rule,’ it’s a documentary; grow up, people. It took months before they picked it up again. Finally, we got signed by a distributor.”
“Reign In Blood” was SLAYER‘s first album to enter The Billboard 200 chart (at No. 94). The LP was certified gold by the RIAA (Recording Industry Association Of America) on November 20, 1992 for sales in excess of 500,000 copies.
(Thanks: Martin a.k.a. Kens)