Exodus - Bonded By Blood review
|Album:||Bonded By Blood|
|Release date:||April 1985|
01. Bonded By Blood
03. And Then There Were None
04. A Lesson In Violence
05. Metal Command
07. No Love
08. Deliver Us To Evil
09. Strike Of The Beast
10. And Then There Were None [Live in London] [Century Media reissues bonus]
11. A Lesson In Violence [Live in London] [Century Media reissues bonus]
Bay area legends Exodus's debut release Bonded By Blood is often hailed as one of the most influential thrash albums of all time. It's what you would expect from artists coming from the Richmond, CA area during the 80's crack epidemic, even nowadays Richmond is frequently among the top 10 most dangerous cities in The United States at the end of any given year. Bonded By Blood is a gritty, dirty, violent and highly aggressive work just like the environment and time period that spawned it. What other band can make a song about sadistically killing and raping that people can party and dance to? Not Many. I respect Exodus all the more because they aren't "shock rock." They are still realistic in the sense that they aren't only "doing it for the image" or to get a reaction out of people unlike some other more popular "extreme" bands portray themselves. Bonded by Blood to me is like home cooking. It may not be world-class, critically acclaimed cuisine, but every time I eat at a fancy restaurant, it's good but not satisfying. Sometimes after I eat at a gourmet restaurant, I end up going to a local hole-in-the-wall type spot to get food that is just as good; sometimes even better and will actually satisfy my hunger. I feel the same way about this piece; it may not be refined or "plated artfully," but damn it's good.
The songs on this release aren't slick or pretty in any way shape or form, they're the antithesis of the borderline homoerotic Los Angeles G.L.A.M bands that gave metal a near permanent black eye all throughout the 80's. The production is a bit muddy at times, but it only adds to the effect of the album. They actually replayed this album with the new band members and called it Let There Be Blood. Most of the tracks actually don't sound quite right with modern production. The speedy riffs on the album pump adrenaline and the percussion is vicious. Gary Holt has to be one of the best guitarists in thrash, this guy is a shred-fucking-monster! His solos are bone-crushing on this album, they sometimes have a blue-grass feel to them which not a lot of other guitarists can pull off. The solo on "No Love" was especially bad ass, definitely worth a listen. The only interlude on the album is the 40-second medieval sounding intro to "No Love," which only serves as a sweet contrast to the nasty, sinister riff when the song actually begins. This song was the inspiration to one of my tattoos on the back of my arm that I had done after my high school graduation party, I was pretty hammered but I don't regret it.
This album is a classic; a definitive piece of Metal history. If you haven't heard it you should definitely listen to it, probably in my top 20 albums of all time.
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