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Worthless - 13%

Visionary, October 24th, 2007

"there will never have been anything as brutal and genre defining done before in thrash metal. An epic monster this one is, and the next is going to take it even further."

This is a quote taken from Exodus from their announcement of this album. This sure is a bold statement. The question is did Exodus live up to this? The answer is absolutely not. I could go on and on about more brutal or epic or genre defining albums. The Atrocity Exhibition is nothing of the sort in anyway. This is just another lifeless groove album.

The first thing that strikes me when listening is just how obnoxious the riffs really are. The riffs are very simple utilizing very few chords and are not at all choppy but just complete groove and worst of all is that Exodus are very repetitive with these riffs and most of the tracks last for a long time. Occasionally Exodus will attempt a thrash riff but they are just to stop/start to work and end up giving me a headache. If you want a thrash riff to work in this case you have to link the chords quicker. The solos are also pretty useless. They seem to mostly be used just for the sake of it and there is no structure in the songs that seems to make them fit. They are neither fast nor technical except on the rare occasion and that is definitely not a good thing as it just makes them sound lifeless and boring.

The drumming was the only thing I enjoyed when listening to Shovel Headed Kill Machine. Here I didn't even notice the drums unless I forced myself to listen to them. And then I just heard an occasional bang on the drums; no fills, no variation. It could almost have been a poorly programmed drum machine.

Now Rob Dukes makes a very slight improvement here from his performance on Shovel Headed Kill Machine but that really isn't saying too much. His voice is still largely in metalcore territory and sounds very dry, and monotonous. Occasionally he goes a little bit deeper but this is only by a small amount but is still largely welcomed as it is an improvement but this is not enough to save the vocal performance here. Worst of all clean background singing is used that further solidifies the band's connections with metalcore. The fact that I am reminded greatly of all those formulaic metalcore bands such as trivium with their back and forth between annoying shouts and clean singing is certainly not a good thing.

There is virtually nothing that can save this album, not even the production which is actually quite good as it sounded a little muddy and highlighted the appropriate parts but if these parts are useless to begin with then it doesn't really matter.

Overall I am glad that I didn't even waste my time downloading this album but rather just listened to it's entirety from Exodus' Myspace page. I hope the band continues to do this so more people like me can realize how bad they sound and are put off from wasting their money. If you want real thrash from 2007 then check out releases by Lich King, Ultimatum, Dekapitator and Chaosphere. Don't waste your time or energy on this.