Chris Nieratko

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Like every other red blooded American, my favorite musical talents are Elvis, Ghostface and Morrissey. And Slayer: you can’t forget Slayer. I think one of the main reasons I care so deeply about Slayer is that they have always been good to us in New Jersey. Dating as far back as their 1985 Live Undead release where you can here them say, “This goes out to my Old Bridge militia,” up to a few years ago when they played to a sold out audience at Giants Stadium and then still did a show at the 500 capacity, now defunct, Birch Hill Nightclub in Old Bridge the following night.

Slayer and New Jersey are perfect together. I remember being at their last show at Birch Hill when the venue owner decided to oversell the show by 300 or more people and being ass to elbow with everyone in the place. The only thing I hate more than people touching me is sweaty people touching me. To ease my discomfort, I posted up next to the bar and began slamming beer after watery domestic beer. I had already killed a twelve-pack in the parking lot, and before long I had to piss like a racehorse but there was no way to get to the head. We were packed in like sardines, and I only had one option: drink my beer then fill my cup back up right where I stood. The room was so hot and gross that when I put my cup of piss on the bar you could see steam coming off it. I set the cup an arm’s reach away from me and split my time between watching the stage and waiting to see if anyone went for the “free beer” I left on the bar. A few people put their hand on it but the cup was so warm they passed. I filled up three more cups before I finally had a taker. The guy was wasted, swaying, barely standing, and when he reached for the cup of piss he missed it. He was blind drunk. It took a few more attempts before he was able to get a shaky hand on it, spilling some onto his hand as he did so. It was like watching the Six Million Dollar Man go into action as he raised the cup to his lips. Everything in the room slowed down. My eyes widened and a smile overtook my face…HE WAS GOING TO DRINK MY PISS! And sure enough, he did. A big, healthy swig of it. Then he made a yuck-face, threw the “beer” on the ground, shook his head in disappointment and vanished into the crowd. All I could do was laugh. Then the band started playing Tormentor and everyone went ape-shit. It was like a movie moment. I got so giddy and excited that I started giggling uncontrollably and throwing the remaining cups of piss out into the crowd. One guy got hit square in the face with one. It was, hands down, the best Slayer show I’d ever seen.

Read an interview with Chris Nieratko conducted in August 2007.