32 Years Ago: SLAUGHTER rehearse and record their earliest material (Meatcleaver)

Those “Meatcleaver” demos were us experimenting with ideas and lyrics. Completely off the top of our heads!!

On this day in 1984 legendary Canadian band SLAUGHTER were rehearsing in Ron Sumners basement. It’s the first recording of the band, the tape made it’s way into tape trading circles and became known as “Meatcleaver”.

Terry: “We just had a million ideas in our head and pretending we were VENOM, METALLICA or SLAYER! I threw in a bit of KISS, PLASMATICS and a ton of ALICE COOPER and it ended up sounding like something completely different.”
Dave: “Almost everything we recorded Terry would release. Actually Terry had a book of lyrics and we would just write a bunch of riffs and see how each riff would go with certain lyrics. I guess we were pretty fast… pretty lucky.”
– from Voices from the Darkside

Interesting historical document but these are raw early ideas! Even so many of these songs were refined and re-recorded for later releases. The band quickly improved and by the end of the year recorded their first demo Bloody Karnage. Surrender or Die followed the next year and the classic masterpiece Strappado LP came out in 1987.

The ‘Meatcleaver’ rehearsal wasn’t intended as an ‘official’ demo:

Terry: “We always were tape traders with other bands and so I always mailed free rehearsal and live tapes to pen-pals in magazines. Also to test the waters on new material and get feedback from true “metalheads” like ourselves.”
Dave: “I used to get pissed off when Terry would release everything. But if he didn’t we would have not got the exposure that we did.”
– from Voices from the Darkside