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Ventura Theater; Ventura, CA; 11/28/03

Reviewed by Spudbeast

There's nothing more exciting than finding out that the legendary Slayer is coming to your town. Then, when you add Hatebreed and Arch Enemy to the bill (not to mention Jagermeister) you know you're in for one hell of an evening. 

Bad Acid Trip were up first and didn't fare so well with the audience. These people were here to see the mighty Slayer and, unless you won them over with your first couple of songs, you were done. That's what happened to Bad Acid Trip, who were mercilessly drubbed by the crowd until their set ended seemingly a bit early. The band gave it their best, but the cards were against them. For more information, check out

Much more appealing to the crowd was Arch Enemy. While I'm not too familiar with the band's material,  each song was great, relentless, and very fast. Unfortunately, Arch Enemy didn't have a very long set, but their last song, "Liars," stood out. I definitely will pick up their new album "Anthems for Rebellion." For more information, check out

Hatebreed was up next, and, as you may imagine, were as brutal as hell. I wasn't a big fan of Hatebreed before they took the stage, but their set blew me away. Their amazingly, heavily bass-driven, hardcore songs rocked with incredible energy. Singer Jamey Jasta kept the energy level high, never stopping at all. Of the songs they played off "The Rise of Brutality" - their explosive new album - "Beholder of Justice" was the best, gripping the crowd with an iron fist. Hatebreed put on an amazing set, closing with "Perseverance." For more information, check out

Slayer was up next.

After an unexpectedly long wait, Slayer arrived. Jeff Hanneman, Tom Araya, Kerry King and drummer Dave Lombardo tore through the set, including such classics as "Chemical Warfare," "South of Heaven," "Mandatory Suicide" and newer songs like "Bloodline." Soon, Slayer ripped through  "Angel of Death," which was followed by nearly all the songs off their milestone "Reign in Blood" album. During "Piece by Piece," someone ran onstage, and - in an attempt to avoid security - knocked Hanneman down. Don't worry, though. The interloper was briskly kicked in the head by Araya. The band promptly started again after, I presume, Hanneman had a few choice "words" backstage with the guy. The final songs were Slayer anthems "Raining Blood" and "Postmortem." Slayer was pure fury throughout their set, clearly holding their own in the world of metal today. For more information, check out

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Copyright 2003 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 23 Aug 2016 22:57:16 -0400.