Several 80's San Francisco thrash bands had successful
careers and are fondly remembered, with Exodus being
one of the best of the bunch.
The band emerged in the early 80's, with
early lineups featuring none other than Kirk Hammett, who
was directly recruited by
following that band's firing of Dave Mustaine.
Their debut album, Bonded By Blood, is an undisputed
thrash classic, and one of a handful of albums that would
define American thrash for the next several years.
Switching vocalists from the volatile Paul Baloff to
(who sang for
Testament in their early days, when they went by the name Legacy),
two more fine albums were released before the end of
the decade, including 1989's
Fabulous Disaster, which narrowly gets the BNR nod as their
Riding high on their success, they were awarded a major label
with Capitol Records, but by then the scene had caught up to
With a flood of like-minded thrash bands competing for space,
Exodus was relegated to just another band, and their two
Capitol releases, Impact Is Imminent
and Force Of Habit,
failed to generate the same fervor as their early works, and
by the mid-nineties the band was done.
A brief reunion with
original vocalist Baloff
happened in 1997, long enough to record and
release the Another Lesson In Violence live album, followed
by another break in activity.
Finally, the band became active once again in late 2001, but
just as they started gathering steam, they were struck by
a tragic blow in Paul Baloff's death in January 2002.
Souza returned to the fold to
continue playing live in tribute to Baloff, and after a delay
or two, the long-awaited comeback studio album,
Tempo Of The Damned, was released in 2004, signalling the true
rebirth of the band.
Another vocalist switched ensued, with newcomer Rob Dukes at the mic,
and Exodus charged forward, with a more intense, modern take on
A third reunion with Souza at first seemed out of the question, but
eventually he did return to the band yet again, in time to record
2014's Blood In, Blood Out.
Upcoming album: Persona Non Grata,
release date November 19, 2021.