New Orleans-based thrash metal pioneers EXHORDER will release their first album in 27 years, "Mourn The Southern Skies", on September 20 via Nuclear Blast Records. The band now features founding members Vinnie La Bella (guitar) and Kyle Thomas (vocals) along with Jason Viebrooks (HEATHEN) on bass, Marzi Montazeri (ex-SUPERJOINT RITUAL, PHILIP H. ANSELMO & THE ILLEGALS) on guitar and Sasha Horn (FORBIDDEN) on drums.
The disc's first single, "My Time", can be heard below.
EXHORDER made its long-awaited return last year with a string of reunion shows and festival appearances and is now launching a full-on comeback with "Mourn The Southern Skies". Recorded by Duane Simoneaux at OCD Recording And Production and working with producer Jens Bogren (AMON AMARTH, OPETH, SEPULTURA) at Fascination Street Studios in Sweden for mix/master, EXHORDER is armed with more fury and vigor than bands half their age, concocting an intoxicating amalgam of old-school thrashers and groovers blended with a modern, mature approach.
From the opening of the first track of "Mourn The Southern Skies", listeners are reminded immediately just what EXHORDER is exactly through the spitting rage "My Time" forces upon their ears. It is evident that the anger remains prevalent, with perhaps a different point of view that younger men could not possibly have understood on earlier albums. Horn's energy and punk influence fire the engines, with VieBrooks locking down the foundation tightly. La Bella once again has proven himself "The Godfather" of thrash riffs, which cut through like a high-speed drill bit thanks to the stellar production. A lead guitar face-off in the solo not only exhibits Vinnie's sometimes under-appreciated skills as a shredder, but also showcases newcomer Montazeri ("The High Priest Of Distortion"). If anyone ever doubted EXHORDER's skill set regarding guitar soloing, those days are gone forever! And finally, as if riding a runaway garbage truck with fireworks exploding off of its roof top, Thomas invokes venom and energy with familiar passion. All in all, the truth is apparent — EXHORDER means business once again!
La Bella says of EXHORDER's resurgence: "You can plot and scheme for years, even decades (as is in our case). You can work hard, keep grinding, bang the square peg in the round hole until it looks somewhat presentable. But sometimes you just need to let time tell you it's time.
"EXHORDER has its own soul. And it pokes me in the ribs ever so often as if to remind me, 'Hey asshole, we ain't done yet!'
"Kyle and myself had a dream as teenagers. And as cliche as it may seem, we never woke up from it. EXHORDER has always crept in and out of our lives. So no magic bullet or formula here. It was only a simple matter of time before the right guys, the right songs, the right manager/label would finally come to the party.
"It's been damn near 35 years since we first uttered the name EXHORDER. 27 years since our last record, and a whole lot of breaking up and making up in between. So why is this time different? Why start again at 50 years of age instead of retiring? Simple... because it's finally TIME!"
"Mourn The Southern Skies" track listing:
01. My Time
03. Hallowed Sounds
04. Beware The Wolf
05. Yesterday's Bones
06. All She Wrote
08. The Arms Of Man
09. Ripping Flesh
10. Mourn The Southern Skies
EXHORDER is currently performing shows in Europe and will return to North America for dates with KATAKLYSM in September.
EXHORDER released two albums in the early 1990s through the Roadrunner label — 1990's "Slaughter In The Vatican" and 1992's "The Law" — before breaking up, with Kyle going on to form FLOODGATE and also briefly appearing live as the vocalist for TROUBLE, which he later joined on a full-time basis (and is still a member of).
EXHORDER is cited by many as the originator of the riff-heavy power-groove approach popularized by PANTERA.