Believe it or not today marks the day that the very first album by Bay Area Thrashers Exodus had arrived on the shelves of record stores everywhere; I am speaking of the molten moshpit inciter of “Bonded By Blood” which celebrates its 30th Anniversary today. Now before I go any further I have to admit that I was not a fan of this kind of Metal back in that time period as it was still just a little “too much” for me despite my enjoying some Slayer, Metallica and lots of what was going to be referred to as Power Metal eventually. Don’t worry though my friends as I would eventually grow to better appreciate works such as this one even if it was as a latecomer.
As many Metal fans can attest, “Bonded By Blood” was a very influential album for the still-growing Thrash Metal genre and listening to it today I felt that there were a lot of elements of Speed Metal in there as well (yes there is a difference between the two if you didn’t know that already) and the dual riffing of Holt and Hunolt are like listening to razors slicing the melodies into the air. I was playing drums around that time and Hunting’s work impressed me since I was mystified by such speed and precision without missing the proverbial beat. The growls and screams of Baloff are the perfect match for this kind of abrasive musical attack and according to research this is the only full album that his vocals appear on.
Original Exodus Lineup: Paul Baloff (vocals), Gary Holt (lead and rhythm guitars), Rick Hunolt (lead and rhythm guitars), Rob McKillop (bass), Tom Hunting (drums)
Even though I personally arrived at this album later than some of my friends, my favorite tracks remain its own title number along with “A Lesson In Violence”, “Metal Command”, “Pirahna” and “Strike Of The Beast”. What were your favorites from this one? Let me know in the comments along with whatever else you wish to say about this milestone in Thrash Metal history.
1. Bonded by Blood
3. And Then There Were None
4. A Lesson in Violence
5. Metal Command
7. No Love
8. Deliver Us to Evil
9. Strike of the Beast
It would be remastered with a few bonus tracks in 1999 by Century Media Records. In 2008, the Exodus lineup of the time re-recorded this album and released it under the title “Let There Be Blood” and from the original lineup only Holt and Hunting were a part of it. The album is an homage to their past and also to former singer Baloff who passed away after a stroke back in 2002. Since that recording, singer Rob Dukes has been replaced by Steve “Zetro” Souza. Exodus currently tours whenever possible and guitarist Holt is now a full-fledged member of Slayer as well.