Welcome to our “Psychedelic Lunch” series, “Spooktober Edition” where we find out how deep the rabbit hole really goes and explore music from the 60’s to today. Weekdays At Noon EST. Enjoy the trip!
Dead Skin Mask By Slayer, Album: Seasons in the Abyss 1990
This song is about serial killer Ed Gein, who skinned his dead victims and wore their skins as suits, hence the name “Dead Skin Mask.” At the end of the song, a voice can be heard saying things like, “I don’t want to play anymore, Mr. Gein.” and “LET ME OUT!”
Edward Theodore Gein August 27, 1906 – July 26, 1984), also known as the Butcher of Plainfield or the Plainfield Ghoul, was an American convicted murderer and body snatcher. Gein’s crimes, committed around his hometown of Plainfield, Wisconsin, gathered widespread notoriety in 1957 after authorities discovered he had exhumed corpses from local graveyards and fashioned trophies and keepsakes from their bones and skin. Gein also confessed to killing two women: tavern owner Mary Hogan in 1954 and hardware store owner Bernice Worden in 1957.
Slayer’s first two albums with producer Rick Rubin saw the band take their uncompromising thrash to new levels of high-speed hate (Reign in Blood) and doomy evil (South of Heaven). They closed their definitive trilogy with 1990’s Seasons in the Abyss, which followed the slower, moodier direction of its predecessor to an even darker, more malevolent place with songs like the title cut and “Dead Skin Mask.” It also led Slayer to one of their biggest tours, dubbed the Clash of the Titans, as well as to the end of their classic lineup, following drummer Dave Lombardo’s departure in 1992.
JEFF HANNEMAN told Revolver Magazine that he feels Seasons is just an extension of South of Heaven. We were still in that frame of mind after South. “Dead Skin Mask” is definitely my favorite song on that record — the riff is just haunting.