Posted on by Oran

One of this years most anticipated releases has finally arrived! But does it pack the punch we so desperately crave from Kerry King?

Slayer have consistently been in the headlines since back in 2018 when they announced their decision to retire.

Since then, there has been incalculable reports of their final world tour, to Kerry King announcing his solo project, the sobering statements about his fellow band members, and the surprising news of their fragmented reunion (which involves three US Festivals later this year). Regardless, there’s no denying that they have been dominating many a heated discussion within your local Metal community, and will continue to do so when this beast of an album is finally released to the public.

So, how do you follow a forty-plus year successful career as a solo artist? Well, Kerry assembled a crew of seasoned musicians who are no strangers to the industry, and have in their own right, an impressive and decorated discography under their collective studded belts!

Featuring, ex-Machine Head / ex-Vio-Lence and occasional Lamb of God shredder, Phil Demmel, former Hellyeah bassist, Kyle Sanders, current Death Angel vocalist Mark Osegueda, and Slayer drummer, Paul Bostoph, it was obvious that King was not fucking around when it came to his debut opus as a solo artist.

Case in point! As soon as the all-too familiar tone of Kings guitar pours through the speakers for album opener, ‘Diablo‘, there is a moment of trepidation, where I find myself asking; ‘Is this going to be a watered-down version of Slayer?“.

Much to my delight, the chaos and aggression explodes with ‘Where I Reign‘, and, boy-oh-boy, does Osegueda make one hell of an impact! Next up is latest single, ‘Residue‘, where King keeps the intensity at an all time high. The plodding brutality gives major Slayer vibes, but with a slightly different sonic perspective.

Idle Hands‘ comes next, followed by, what I consider to be one of the albums  highlights,  ‘Trophies of the Tyrant‘. The pounding pace of this track is just made for the stage and proves that King has many tricks up his sleeveless shirt. It has to be said also that Demmel’s guitar work sounds like he has been playing with King for decades, as he fits right with regards to the balance of each track, not overdoing it with long meandering solos etc.

The album’s halfway mark gives us ‘Crucification‘, ‘Tension‘, and ‘Everything I Hate About You‘, which showcases some impressive drumming from Bostoph. So far, so good! In fact, the level of quality songwriting champions the last Slayer album, ‘Repentless‘, in leaps and bounds!

There, I said it!

Once agin it’s impossible to ignore the sheer brilliance of Osegueda’s vocal performance here, as he spits pure fucking venom through the tracks like, ‘Toxic‘, and the Punk-fuelled, ‘Two Fists‘. At this point I can’t imagine who could have been a better choice to handle the vocals for this debut. It couldn’t be anymore of a perfect partnership, in my opinion.

If you thought that things were gonna mellow out with the last stretch of the LP, then think again, because if anything, King and his band mates push even harder with, ‘Rage‘, ‘Shrapnel‘, and the utterly crushing title track, ‘From Hell I Rise‘, which brings the album to a breathless close.

From Hell I Rise‘ is an astounding debut, packed with King’s trademark sound, a few spoonfuls of Slayer’s magic DNA, however, bringing something way more exciting to the table, than I had expected. The results of this album are far from soporific, and if anything, the tracks hit like like a jolt of raw electricity surging through ones veins. ‘From Hell I Rise‘ is absolute essential listening for any self-confessed Metal fan.


From Hell I Rise‘ will be available from May 17th via Reigning Phoenix Music.

Oran O’Beirne 2024