Nine things about last night’s Slayer show at Shoreline

1. Fittingly, the band came on just as the sun was going down.

2. The pit on the lawn was huge, and in the golden light it looked like a Tibetan mandala. A really violent mandala.

3. Frontman Tom Araya was exceedingly polite throughout the set, repeatedly thanking us for coming out then dipping into a growl to introduce the next song.

4. Guitarist Kerry King sported an incredibly long beard that was braided into a knot stretching down to his solar plexus. With the lighting just so, the effect was that of a desert monk, maybe. Purity of the faith.

5. The other guitarist, Jeff Hanneman, played a guitar sporting a Heineken graphic. We wondered how much money that brings in. (On a related note, Slayer hockey jerseys were on sale for $90.)

6. Shoreline, with its bright, Disneyish colors and Pirates of the Caribbeanesque wooden footbridges, is a weird (though not unpleasant) place to see a metal show.

7. There was an old guy on the lawn in front of us wearing a shirt that read, “Everything louder than everything else.” There were a lot of kids wandering around carrying branded shopping bags full of the swag they had bought.

8. It was tough not to be reminded all over again exactly how influential Slayer is. Every other band in the world has stolen at least a little something from them.

9. When their set finished, it seemed like the entire amphitheatre rushed for the parking lot. Marilyn Manson might have been the de facto headliner last night, but this was a Slayer crowd.

(Update: I added one more thing after the post went up.)