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A Review of the 1990 album Seasons in the Abyss by Slayer

Updated on January 3, 2018
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Ara is currently an Accounting student at Glendale Community College in Glendale. CA. His main goal in life is the enjoyment of it.

The front cover for Seasons in the Abyss

Track listing for Seasons in the Abyss

  1. War Ensemble
  2. Blood Red
  3. Spirit in Black
  4. Expendable Youth
  5. Dead Skin Mask
  6. Hallowed Point
  7. Skeletons of Society
  8. Temptation
  9. Born of Fire
  10. Seasons in the Abyss

Seasons in the Abyss: the review: covers the first seven songs

Slayer, one of the most well-known thrash metal bands ever finished the decade of the 1980’s in fine fashion. They returned to the studio in 1990 and the result is the album Seasons in the Abyss. One of the common lyrical themes in the album is the horrors of war and the effect that this can have on soldiers who serve in these wars. However, one of the weak points of the album is the lead guitar work. While it has speed, there is not much in the way of feeling or passion. Blood Red continues in the tradition of Slayer songs that talk about war as the blood of innocent people is shed. It is said that in war there are no winners. A solid song in the album is the one called Spirit in Black. It does have some good melody being a Slayer song. I say this because Slayer focuses exclusively on speed instead of melody that bands such as Kreator concentrate on. Slayer switches to a mid-tempo song that is quite catchy and it is the one called Expendable Youth. Skeletons of Society is one of the favorite songs of this writer due to the catchy nature of it. It seems that the end of the world is near as there is no future or past. The song is about someone who thinks that the world is slowly decaying and falling apart as he is witness to the destruction that he sees in front of him.

The song called Spirit in Black

How does Seasons in the Abyss compare to other 1990 heavy metal albums?

How does Seasons in the Abyss compare to other albums released in 1990? First of all, it is not a groovy thrash album like Pantera’s Cowboys from Hell. It does not have the technicality of Judas Priest’s Painkiller and it certainly does not even compare to Annihilator’s Never Neverland album. For 1990 it is a decent album. The strongest songs in this album are Spirit in Black, Expendable Youth, Skeletons of Society, and the title track seasons in the Abyss which finishes off what is a good album but it does not compare to 1986’s Reign in Blood. Overall, this writer gives Seasons in the Abyss an 80 out of 100 points. Slayer would not really regain its greatness as a band until 2006’s Christ Illusion and especially 2009’s World Painted Blood.

What is the reason for this score? First of all, there is the sub-standard lead guitar work and then the songs overall are not as good as compared to 1986 which was just four years earlier. Also, Slayer is one of those bands that can get kind of redundant to listen to especially since there are so many quality thrash metal bands in the world.

Favorite song on Seasons in the Abyss

What is your favorite song on Seasons in the Abyss?

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The good groovy song called Skeletons of Society

The official music video for the great song Seasons in the Abyss

© 2016 Ara Vahanian

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