EXODUS - Metal Thrashing Mad!
by Martin Popoff
A quintessential rock-solid pillar of the Bay Area thrash scene, Exodus could do no wrong in the heady days of the mid-'80s. Crashing into view with '85's seminal Bonded By Blood (great, but a year late?), the band went on to record four more studio albums before hanging up their skates. A live reunion album in '97 called Another Lesson In Violence became the head-knocking calling card for what was to come, namely the ear-shattering new record for '04 called Tempo Of The Damned
"I remember Kerrang! magazine had one of those Where Are They Now things in around '93," recalls guitarist Gary Holt with his knack for the disarming chuckle, "and it still stings to this day. When they got to Exodus, it said, 'Riffing in '84, roofing in '94.' I was like, 'Ouch (laughs), those f**kers.' But hey, you know, there's nothing wrong with working. I've since given it to my ex-wife, but the only time I ever bought a house in my life was from a regular job."
Roofing? "Yeah, we definitely had to get jobs. After we broke up in '93, myself, Rick (Hunolt - guitars), and Zetro (Steve Sousa - vocals) all worked for the same roofing company, as well as Phil Demmel from Vio-lence, now Machine Head. And you know, it's a humbling experience, you know, to have to join the working world for the first time in basically most of your adult life."
Plus the guys had to kick drugs, the wake-up call coming quite recently really, with the flame-out death of original maniacal frontman Paul Baloff. "Yeah, we're definitely a lot wiser," says Holt. "I mean, I quit doing drugs, which is the only thing that enabled this album to get made, cleaning up our past, getting our old demons off our back."
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