Slayer has set "Repentless" as the title of its new album, due worldwide on Friday, September 11 via Nuclear Blast. The long-awaited follow-up to 2009's "World Painted Blood" marks the first time Slayer has worked with producer Terry Date. It is also Slayer's first CD since drummer Paul Bostaph's return to the band in 2013 and guitarist Gary Holt's addition to the Slayer touring lineup in 2011.
Slayer guitarist Kerry King told RollingStone.com that he began writing songs for "Repentless" when he found out that the band's co-founding axeman, Jeff Hanneman, had come down with the flesh-eating bacteria, necrotizing fasciitis, in 2011, and subsequently had to take a break from the band. "We anticipated he'd maybe be working on some stuff with us, but we didn't know that for sure, so I just started working on stuff," King said. "Whether I had worked on half a Slayer record and had eight songs for something else I could do with my friends, so be it. It turns out, Jeff passed, so all the stuff I had been working on instantly became Slayer songs."
In a recent interview with U.K.'s Metal Hammer magazine, King spoke about some of the individual tracks that will appear on "Repentless".
"There's a couple of songs that are going to be on it that the fans might know," he said. "'Atrocity Vendor' was released in the States on the B-side of some single [a limited vinyl edition of 'World Painted Blood'], so now it's 'Atrocity Vendor 2015'. It's completely re-recorded. It's got new leads, new vocals, Paul playing drums... it's pretty cool. There's a brand new version of 'Implode' [which was recorded in 2014 and given away for free] on there. The version of 'When The Stillness Comes' is brand new compared to the single [that came] out [for last month's Record Store Day]."
He continued: "The first song is called 'Repentless' and that one's pretty much... I call it the Hannemanthem! I wrote that for [late Slayer guitarist] Jeff [Hanneman]. Oh, dude, it's fast as fuck. You don't know what the fuck's coming! [Laughs] A song called 'Vices' is on there somewhere. It's super heavy. It'll pummel you in the face. 'Take Control''s another fast one. 'Cast The First Stone''s another heavy one."
King added: "There's 12 songs on it, one being the intro, one being 'Implode', one being 'Atrocity Vendor' and one being 'When The Stillness Comes', but every version of those songs you may have heard before is different, so I think that's cool, but I also wanted them to be part of a collection. I like the finality of songs belonging on a record. It's probably about 40 or 45 minutes, maybe less. We did 'God Hates Us All' and we put every song we had at the time on the record because that was the trendy thing to do, but as soon as we did that, I vowed never to do it again. I grew up with 10-song albums."