GERMAN THRASH METAL IS BACK WITH A VENGEANCE!! Well it never really went away but over the last few years classic German thrash metal bands have made welcome returns to the UK. Accept have headlined Hammerfest and done a UK tour. Others like Kreator,Sodom,Destruction and Holy Moses have all appeared on the main stage at the prestigious Bloodstock metal festival .
So after their split in 1990 we welcome back Exumer! Formed in 1985 by vocalist Mem Von Stein and guitarist Ray Mensh,Exumer released 2 raging albums before their demise. Possessed By Fire in 1986 and Rising From The Sea in 1987 were underground gems. During my tape trading days in the 80′s Exumer were extremely popular and fellow traders worldwide embraced their abrasive style. Mem and Ray reformed Exumer in 2008 and have since played various European shows to rave reviews. They also played a headlining set at a festival in Los Angeles to a 1300+ crowd!
After a gap of almost 24yrs Exumer will release their long awaited new album Fire And Damnation via Metal Blade. Germany,Austria and Switzerland can buy it on April 6th and the rest of Europe on the 10th. On 1st listen it is hard to believe the time lapse between Rising From The Sea and Fire And Damnation as their is no let up from the opening scream from Mem Von Stein to the churning riffs of closing track Tribal Furies.
10 tracks make up the album,8 of which clock in at around the 3 minute mark and the other 2 at just under 4 minutes giving it an almost “punky” vibe. It’s very very aggressive and Mem’s vocals have hardly changed since the early days,proven by their re-recording of Fallen Saint,a track off their debut album Possessed By Fire and played back to back there is nothing to choose between the 2 apart from a better production on the Fire And Damnation cut. With the album clocking in at just over half an hour the listener is compelled to press the play button immediately to hear this opus again as its thrash metal of the highest order.
Standouts for me are the aforementioned re-working of Fallen Saint,the o.t.t guitar solo in A New Morality and The Weakest Limb,bringing to mind Strike Of The Beast by Exodus. In fact there is an Exodus vibe thoughout the album as Exumer play with Mem’s distinctive vocal style akin to the sadly departed Paul Baloff,warp speed guitar work and jackhammer drumming. Their next live date is at the Evil Horde Metalfest in Essen,Germany on May 12th and i hope Exumer will play some UK gigs in 2012!
Exumer line up :-
Mem Von Stein- Vocals.
Ray Mensh- Guitars.
T. Schiavo- Bass.
Matthias Kassner- Drums.
Album track listing :-
Fire And Damnation.
Vermin Of The Sky.
The Weakest Limb.
Waking The Fire.
I Dare You.
I award Fire And Damnation a welcome back to Exumer 10/10!