Friday, March 16, 2012

Artist Profile: Exhorder

    Apologies for the lack of posting this week, had a wisdom tooth pulled and haven't felt much like doing any typing.

     Your regular programming after the break...

     This week's profile is of a band that is criminally overlooked amongst metalheads by the name of Exhorder. 

     Exhorder is a heavy metal band from the NOLA scene of the thrash/groove metal vein. Having a fairly short career spanning two full length albums and a few demos in the mid 80's to early 90's, they are often cited as one of the pioneers of the groove metal movement that Pantera put on the map in the early 90's.
If that album cover doesn't scream Heavy Metal to you then something is seriously wrong.

      Their debut album Slaughter in the Vatican (Released 1990) is balls to the wall thrash metal, but with mid paced breaks in some of the songs showing glimpses of groove metal from time to time. Between the nonstop riff-fest of the guitars and the atomic clock accuracy Chris Nail's drumming are the howls of frontman Kyle Thomas, falling somewhere in-between the blitzkrieg shout of Slayer's Tom Araya and Pantera's Phil Anselmo. Truly a sonic attack that is sure to please most metalheads looking for something new to headbang to. 

     I wont do an in depth review this time, instead I will post a few youtube links to the songs that I think highlight the albums strengths and will draw new listeners in. 

Highlight #1: The Tragic Period (Track 5)

     Starts off with a slow, creepy intro and immediately jumps into break neck speed thrash. At seven minutes stays intense and interesting enough to not lose the listener. 
 Highlight #2: Legions of Death (Track 6)
     An extremely fast song with some killer mid-paced chugging sections, the drumming in this song is top notch! Thomas' vocals go from spit-fire to almost death metalesque and back, and the guitars are tight and fast as hell. 

Metal as Fuck.

Exhorder's follow up The Law would be released in 1992, the album still retains the signature violence of their debut but mixes in far more groove metal aspects this time around. Once again the job drummer Chris Nail does here if phenomenal stuff. The guitar tone is absolutely bonecrushing and Thomas' vocals have only gotten better and better. Slowing down the tempo from the last album doesn't castrate the sound at all, in fact it just makes the tempo changes in each song all the better. Out of the two, this album is my favorite -  the crushing guitar tone, massive chugging riffs and tight as fuck drums just compel you to headbang until you suffer whiplash.

Highlight #1 The Truth (Track 6) 

Starts off with a chunky tripplett chug riff, rolls into a tight little breakdown and then into a groovy as fuck main riff. The ending acoustic piece segues perfectly into track 7 (The Law) almost as if they should be one song. 

Highlight #2 I am the Cross (Track 3)

The rolling thunder intro riff set's the stage for a groove heavy, yet also fast song. I wish there was a live version to show you, because it is even better live.

Highlight #3 Into the Void (Track 5 Black Sabbath Cover)

Even if you aren't a fan of the band after reading the rest of this piece, this is one of the best covers I have ever heard. They took a fantastic Black Sabbath song and made it their own, while retaining what made the original so damn good.

 I would recommend Exhorder to anyone who is a fan of thrash or groove metal. If you enjoy bands like Slayer, Pantera, Sepultura or even more mainstream stuff like Metallica and Megadeth. I think you will be pleasantly surprised while listening to em. On a scale of one to ten on the must listen scale I would give Exhorder a solid 8 out of ten.

Until next time, stay metal my friends.

No comments:

Post a Comment