EXHORDER — Mourn The Southern Skies (review)

EXHORDER — Mourn The Southern Skies album cover Album · 2019 · Groove Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
3.5/5 ·
Kev Rowland
Some 27 years since the last album ‘The Law’, and nearly 30 years since the iconic debut ‘Slaughter In The Vatican’, Exhorder are back. The only original members are singer Kyle Thomas and guitarist Vinnie LaBella, but they knew what they wanted to achieve this time around and soon brought longtime friend and former member, bassist Jason VieBrooks (Heathen, Grip Inc.). Soon added were drummer Sasha Horn (Forbidden) and guitarist Marzi Montazeri (Heavy As Texas, Philip H. Anselmo & The Illegals) and they hit the ground running, playing gigs concentrating on material from the original two albums, before turning their attention to this, the “comeback” album.

What we have here is a thrash album, hugely influenced in particular by Testament, combined with groove in a manner which is incredibly accessible. Some may know Thomas from his time with Trouble (with whom he is still playing), and there is no doubt that he is quite some singer in the style of Chuck Billy. While he has plenty of power and range, he is a singer as opposed to a screamer and is fond of going into a lower register, especially when the music slows down. His annunciation is really clear for this style of music, and behind him he has a rhythm section which keeps it locked down and two guitarists who are obviously having a blast playing off each other.

Old fans of the band will be pleased to have them back, especially as they tear through the high-octane thrash of “Ripping Flesh” which originally appeared on the first demo, 1986’s ‘Get Rude’. If that isn’t enough, they also invited back original drummer Chris Nail to hold it all together. This is a fun romp, and let’s hope there is enough success for the band to keep it together and produce more albums like this one.

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Vim Fuego wrote:
61 days ago
Mine too. It's not the instant classic that Slaughter in the Vatican was, but 1990 Exhorder couldn't have made a song like Mourn the Southern Skies. It really grows.
Nightfly wrote:
61 days ago
I do like that album, made my top 30 of last year.
UMUR wrote:
2 months ago
I´ve given it a few spins, and honestly I´m not too happy about it, but I was never much a fan of "The Law" either. It´s still a quality release, but just not my poison. I´ll take "Slaughter in the Vatican" any day over this one.

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