There are thrash metal bands. And then there are death metal bands. Bands in both genres exhibit superlative lethality when done right. But combine the two, officially known as death-thrash (thrash-death just sounds stupid), and the superlatives are exponentially more lethal. Like 10X. Take bands like Ripping Corpse, Messiah, Merciless, Hypnosia, Demolition Hammer, Morbid Saint, and, of course, Nifelheim. They’ve taken the most extreme ends of thrash and death metal to their logical conclusion. That is to say, the riffs are hot, the spikes are sharp, and the intent serious as a heart attack. There are no jokes in death-thrash. Death-thrash isn’t about fun. And death-thrash can and will dominate all.
When Exxxekutioner hit our radar (as an advance through Ulthar Records), we were plenty chuffed with the Liverpool-based startup. They have a good ear. UK-based Exxxekutioner bring to mind the aforementioned death-thrash luminaries but with a NWOBHM twist. Not that vocalist Cliff Rosson Edge is attempting his inner Biff Byford or espousing the virtues of Jon Deverill’s ’80s run in Tygers of Pan Tang, but rather that guitarist Mike Woods will spot times when it’s appropriate to turn off the jet fuel for an Angel Witch-like or a Blitzkrieg-like axe-fest of simple yet hard-hitting riffs. Certainly, the Manchester-based (just outside, actually) Exxxekutioner are readying for attack and their target is us. And Christianity. In no order, of course.
Says vocalist Cliff Rosson Edge: “‘Blood Vengeance’ is a practical instruction manual for ritual sacrifice to the devil. The lyrics should summon visions of a subterranean temple, a High Priest, his unwilling sacrifice stripped bare, and the horrors that follow in service of Satan.”
Adds guitarist Mike Woods: “Musically, we wanted to invoke Slayer’s Show No Mercy, mixed with early Venom and Mercyful Fate. I also added some keyboards to bring out the feeling of madness and paranoia in old Italian Giallo horror films.”
With Edge’s sacrilegious description and Woods’ immediately relatable comparison to Slayer and vintage Italian horror films, we’re nothing but red for Exxxekutioner’s “Blood Vengeance.” Time to kill!
** Exxxekutioner’s new album, Death Sentence, is out October 19th via Ulthar Records. Pre-orders for this raging slab of fast death-thrash are available HERE. Click the link or die!