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Redifining the term "hit and miss" - 62%

The_Boss, December 9th, 2007

Most metalheads know the thrash band Exodus and all thrashers know the band Exodus, for being a legendary monster of a band that struck the scene ages ago thrashing their way to the top. Killing posers and non-believers with their music Exodus became a legend. Well, now many years later, Exodus has released their eight full length album and I could not say I haven't been this disappointed this year more excluding Elvenking. The Atrocity Exhibition... Exhibit A is a new age thrash album that is full of hit and miss songs either falling into completely lifeless, mildly interesting or "Sweet! This is actually good!". Mostly following the old trend that Tempo of the Damned and Shovel Headed Killing Machine went through (which I both enjoyed, the latter the most) with a slickened production full of almost groovy riffs but still thrashing somewhat hard.

The songs here are divided into 3 sections for me: the worthless, the semi interesting, and the 'wish-this-was-how-the-whole-album-sounded'. Again, referring to the title, this is a complete hit and miss album, and unfortunately I think the misses outweigh the hits, or at least there are more of them. The hits though, I really enjoy and wish it was how the entire album sounded like because there are several really headbangable moments that make me yell "hell yeah!". But the misses are usually derived from fairly boring riffs, shitty lyrics, and unnecessarily long song lengths, which all typically outweigh a lot of the goods. Some songs (title track and Funeral Hymn) are 10 and 8 minutes long but while there are some complete kickass moments (the solos) they could have easily been cut down in length. Some riffs are typical of what a lot of new age thrash sounds like (new Overkill) but there are several which I can really enjoy like the opening of Funeral Hymn and the whole song of Iconoclasm.

I'd also like to mention that the musicianship here is a complete bonus as always with Exodus. Gary Holt and Tom Hunting shine as usual, the solos are splendid and an absolute delight to the ears when they pop up; very worthy of headbanging. Tom Hunting does an excellent job on drums good to seem him back as well, banging his kit to oblivion sometimes (opening of Iconoclasm). Some prominent bass lines show themselves occasionally too which are always a delight in thrash metal. Rob Dukes is kinda sorta a decent vocalist, halfway between barking and spitting the words out which by the way suck. I really think the lyrics here are worthless, yelling on about anti-war crap or how Christians suck or some other crap, very politically based which I never found to be interesting or at least how this is done.

So while this album isn't complete horseshit I find myself being bored slightly more than I am entertained. The songs being too long don't add to this as well as the seemingly uninspired riffing at times. But still, definitely a hit and miss album that makes me wonder why the album couldn't just be like the hits in this album. The misses are extreme and the hits are entertaining but in the long run this album could have been better but instead seems slightly half assed. It's a shame, I wish Exodus could have pulled off at least another Shovel Headed Killing Machine but I guess not, maybe Exhibit B will be better...