Exodus - Exhibit B: The Human Condition
Way back in 1985, Bay-Area thrashers Exodus released Bonded By Blood, an album that is arguably one of the finest thrash-metal albums ever released, up there with Master of Puppets and Reign in Blood. While the boys may not have achieved that vast cult following that Slayer have, or mega-stardom that Metallica have, they’ve still stuck to their guns and have produced albums that are vastly superior to anything those bands have released in the past five years. Exhibit B: The Human Condition continues this quality streak that has been going in since 2004's Tempo of the Damned.
Opening with the now obligatory classical guitar intro, the band rip into ‘The Ballad of Leonard and Charles’ which is anything but a ballad. Lightning fast riffs, and a vicious vocal performance from Rob Dukes mark this out as one of the most violent Exodus releases in recent years. ‘Hammer and Life’ has stunning solo-work from the legendary Gary Holt, while ‘Downfall’ takes big slabs of brutally heavy thrash and drops them square on your face. Rob Dukes vocals have come on leaps and bounds since he joined the band in 2005. These lyrics are dark, evil and you can really hear the hate and bile in his aggressive screams on songs like ‘March of the Sycophants’.
Exodus have proved why are they are still one of the metal greats, making the kind of steady comeback in terms of quality that Megadeth have achieved in recent years. A violent pummelling from start to finish, this could well be the speed metal album of the year.