To say that Exodus's long career has not been without its troubles would be putting it mildly. From run-ins with major labels to damaging lineup disruption and even the death of vocalist Paul Baloff, it's been a hard road. The latest lineup change – which sees longtime frontman Steve 'Zetro' Souza returning to replace the departed Rob Dukes – has at least been a conscious choice. Rob has his fans, but there are many who feel that Exodus just ain't Exodus without the Z man.
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Which brings us to the band's 10th studio outing and it has to be said it's a nasty fuckin' album. Despite speculation, this is no return to 80s-style Exodus. It is, however, more than worthy of the name. Axeman Gary Holt plays guitar like Hannibal Lecter removes faces, and the arsenal of riffs on display is truly deadly. Zetro, meanwhile, is clearly ecstatic to be back behind the mic, screaming like Albert Steptoe on crack, spewing invective and cursing the world. It's tough to single tracks out – maybe there's nothing as memorable as Toxic Waltz – but it's boiling with rage and a ballad-free zone to boot.
Blood In, Blood Out is out next week via Nuclear Blast. Pre-order it over here.