24 June 2024

Kerry King – From Hell I Rise

Releasedate:   17-05-2024
Label: Reigning Phoenix

Kerry King ‘s debut solo album, “From Hell I Rise,” released on May 17, 2024, marks a significant moment for Slayer and thrash metal fans in general. Known for his 43-year tenure with Slayer, King steps out on his own, bringing together an amazing lineup featuring Death Angel’s Mark Osegueda on vocals, Hellyeah’s Kyle Sanders on bass, Phil Demmel of Vio-lence and Machine Head on guitar, and former Slayer bandmate Paul Bostaph on drums. The result is an album that, while rooted in familiar sounds, showcases King’s unyielding commitment to the thrash metal genre, particularly in the Slayer style.

The album kicks off with “Diablo,” an instrumental opener that sets a sinister tone, reminiscent of Slayer’s darker compositions which we have all heard before. “Where I Reign” and “Residue” follow, delivering the breakneck speed, aggressive riffs and chaotic solos that fans have come to expect from King, the riff  in “Where I Reign” reminded me a bit of “Hardwired” from another band from California that helped shape the genre. Mark Osegueda’s vocal performance is particularly noteworthy, channeling a raw intensity that cuts through the chaotic, fast-paced instrumentation.

Despite the high-caliber performances, “From Hell I Rise” sometimes struggles to distinguish itself from King’s previous work with Slayer. Tracks like “Idle Hands” and “Everything I Hate About You” feel like direct continuations of the sound established on Slayer’s final albums. While this consistency will undoubtedly please long-time fans, it may leave others longing for more innovation. I wonder though, do Slayer fans crave innovation or just more good ol’ Slayer?

That said, the album does venture into new territory on a few occasions. “Trophies Of The Tyrant” slows down the tempo, allowing for a heavier, groove-laden approach that highlights King and Demmel’s guitar abilities. I enjoyed how the song picks up the pace within its finale. “Two Fists” injects a punky energy into the mix, reminiscent of early Suicidal Tendencies, offering a refreshing change of pace. These tracks hint at what could have been a more varied and experimental solo project.

Production-wise, “From Hell I Rise” is top-notch. Josh Wilbur, known for his work with Lamb of God and Gojira, ensures that every instrument is crisp and clear, maintaining a powerful and polished sound throughout the album. 

Lyrically, the album retains the rebellious, anti-establishment themes that have always been a hallmark of King’s work. Songs like “Rage” and “Toxic” tackle contemporary issues with, while the title track, “From Hell I Rise,” closes the album with a defiant statement against religious hypocrisy, echoing the confrontational stance that defined much of Slayer’s discography.

In the end, “From Hell I Rise” is a solid debut for Kerry King as a solo artist. It may not break new ground, but it delivers exactly what fans of thrash metal and Slayer would expect: relentless energy, blistering riffs, and a refusal to compromise. For those who have followed King’s career, this album offers a reassuring continuity, proving that even in a solo venture, he remains dedicated to the genre he helped shape.

Line up:

  • Kerry King – Guitar
  • Ky Sanders – Bass
  • Phil Demmell – Guitar
  • Mark Osegueda – Vocals
  • Paul Bostaph – Drums

Tracklist

  1. Diablo
  2. Where I Reign
  3. Residue
  4. Idle Hands
  5. Trophies Of The Tyrant
  6. Crucifixation
  7. Tension
  8. Everything I Hate About You
  9. Toxic
  10. Two Fists
  11. Rage
  12. Shrapnel
  13. From Hell I Rise

Links:

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