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Slayer...sorry, SLAAAAYEERRRRGHHH! rocks 'Fallon'

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Last night had to be the first time Jimmy Fallon ever heard an entire Slayer song. That is, if he didn’t run backstage and hide behind ?uestlove after the introduction. (Okay, testosterone posturing aside, much love to Jimmy for having, as he says, “one of the most legendary metal bands of all time” on his show). In New York for two Tri-State-area stops on the American Carnage Tour, which also features Testament and Megadeth (tonight in upstate Glen Falls, N.Y. and tomorrow at New Jersey’s Izod Center), Slayer performed “Hate Worldwide,” one of the scorchers from their latest record, World Painted Blood.

Still tight as hell. It’s not surprising, given that despite the gray hair and wrinkles, these guys haven’t stopped thrashing since the early-’80s. They’re having something of a moment right now with the upcoming release of their DVD box set and the American Carnage tour, where they will celebrate the 20th anniversary of Seasons of the Abyss by playing that 1990 album in its entirety. But Slayer never went away. I was a bit worried about bassist-singer Tom Araya, who recently had back surgery that caused Slayer to cancel dates. He ain’t getting any younger. But after watching him last night, I’m gonna just STFU because that guy’s bark can still put the elderly into cardiac arrest.

Fallon also posted a Web exclusive of the band performing “Dead Skin Mask,” a slower, more melodic track from Seasons. They played for about five extremely intense minutes, and the back-and-forth shredding between Kerry King and Jeff Hanneman at about the 3-minute mark might very well be the heaviest thing ever played at 30 Rock’s Studio 6B.

Who’s pumped for American Carnage? Is Slayer “one of the most legendary metal bands of all time”, or THE most legendary metal band?