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Review: Exodus - The Atrocity Exhibition... Exhibit A
The Atrocity Exhibition... Exhibit A

Label: Nuclear Blast Records
Year released: 2007
Duration: 59:45
Tracks: 9
Genre: Thrash Metal


Review online: August 30, 2008
Reviewed by: Michel Renaud
Readers' Rating
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Rated 3.55/5 (71.05%) (38 Votes)

I had been lucky since the return of Exodus, somebody else always ended up reviewing their new albums.  Not so this time.  Tempo of the Damned is one of the most overrated albums in the history of metal.  Shovel Headed Kill Machine had its moments (and pretty cool cover art, I must say.)  The band now claims that The Atrocity Exhibition... Exhibit A will become a classic.  Well... How about... No?  I have two problems with newer Exodus.  (1) The vocalist.  I can't stand him, plain and simple.  The cleaner style has always been more appropriate for Exodus, so this really, really sticks out like a sore thumb.  He sounds like an annoying metalcore kid or some shit like that (well, to be fair, the vocals aren't really metalcore-ish, but just close to that annoyance level.)  (2) The groove.  "Groovy Thrash" is not bad per se, it's usually pretty catchy and this is no exception.  But it just doesn't have what it takes to be of much repeat value.  It's good for a while, but eventually you just stick it on a shelf and forget about it.  Call it the pop music of Thrash, if you will: Disposable.  And that's pretty much what Exodus have been serving us since their return.

With that said, it's not like the guys cannot play all of a sudden.  Somewhere beyond the simplistic-sounding groovy/poppy riffage, one can find a few rawer, sharper, more aggressive riffs, and even some ballsy drumming.  You'll even find a few songs here that, were it not for the vocals, are really, really good Thrash - no, not a replica of the Exodus of yore, but simply Thrash that sounds like it should - fucking metal with attitude.  Unfortunately, the groovy stuff is in the majority here, and that just doesn't have much lasting value.  But there's a good market for this stuff, and Exodus are tapping into it.  Personally, I'm not buying into the hype, sorry for those who are blinded by the superficiality of it all, but there's better Thrash out there, including a lot of those younger bands who may not always be all that original, but at least are doing it right.

More about Exodus...
Review: Blood In, Blood Out (reviewed by MetalMike)
Review: Bonded by Blood (reviewed by Christian Renner)
Review: British Disaster: The Battle of '89 (Live at the Astoria) (reviewed by Michel Renaud)
Review: Exhibit B: The Human Condition (reviewed by Hermer Arroyo)
Review: Exhibit B: The Human Condition (reviewed by Lior "Steinmetal" Stein)
Review: Persona Non Grata (reviewed by MetalMike)
Review: Pleasures Of the Flesh (reviewed by Larry Griffin)
Review: Shovel Headed Kill Machine (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: Tempo of the Damned (reviewed by Christian Renner)
Interview with drummer Tom Hunting on July 13, 2012 (Interviewed by Luxi Lahtinen)
Interview with vocalist Steve "Zetro" Souza on April 9, 2016 (Interviewed by Luxi Lahtinen)
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