Since 1981, the enduring, eternal rallying cry for metal-heads the world over has simply been shouting "SLAYER!" as loud as humanly possible. No sloganeering, no nuance, just people screaming a band's name at each other in all manner of public spaces. It's not just the bone-deep, tribal affection Slayer demands from its audience that makes them so special, though. Undeniable records like "Hell Awaits," "Reign in Blood," and "Seasons in the Abyss" are classics through and through that still manage to sound as urgent and ferocious as the day they were released. May they forever reign.
Slayer plays with Lamb of God, Anthrax, Testament, and Napalm Death on Friday, August 3, at the Darien Lake Performing Arts Center, 9993 Alleghany Road. 5 p.m. $11-$96. darienboxoffice.com; slayer.net.