EXHORDER — Slaughter in the Vatican (review)

EXHORDER — Slaughter in the Vatican album cover Demo · 1987 · Thrash Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
4/5 ·
UMUR
"Slaughter in the Vatican" is the second demo recording by US, Louisiana based thrash/groove metal act Exhorder. The demo was recorded in 1987 at Ultrasonic Studios, and released independently on cassette tape in mid-1987. Since the first demo guitarist David Main and bassist Andy Villaferra have left. New guitarist is Jay Ceravolo and along with original guitarist Vinnie LaBella, Ceravolo also performs the bass parts on "Slaughter in the Vatican".

The eight tracks on this 1987 demo are almost one-to-one the same tracks as you find on their 1990 debut album. The only track featured on the debut album which isn´t featured on this demo is "The Tragic Period". So we get early versions of classic Exhorder tracks like "Desecrator", "Homicide", and of course "Anal Lust", and they sound really great in these demo versions. Raw, unpolished, and caustic in their aggression. Stylistically this is aggressive and fast-paced thrash metal which is however also often quite heavy featuring brutal groove laden riffs and rhythms, with lead vocalist Kyle Thomas snarling and screaming his way through the songs. The sound production is raw, savage, and effective. It´s not a problem at all that the sound production values are as raw and gritty as they are. It just adds more rawness an authenticity to the material.

Having listened to the debut album for many years, it´s interesting to note how these 1987 demo versions are very close to the fully developed versions featured on said album. Exhorder could easily have released their debut album a few years before they did...judged on the quality of this demo they were arguably ready. A 3.5 - 4 star (75%) rating is deserved.
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UMUR wrote:
26 days ago
To me this demo is everything metal is about. Raw unpolished savage aggression.

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