Bonded by Blood
Exiled to Earth

When this whole thrash revival mess first came around and started to take hold, I was pretty damn excited – thrash was my first love of extreme metal, and it remains my favorite. While I do still love the old style, I also quite enjoy where the genre went as time went by – it never truly went away, it matured and progressed. So when bands like Municipal Waste, Fueled by Fire and this here Bonded by Blood came onto the scene, I thought it was cool to hear new takes on the 80’s variety of my beloved genre of choice. Though as these years have gone by, so many of these bands have come along not so much as a throwback or borrowing influence from my old faves, but as carbon copies. Personally, I’ve had my fill. There are a handful that do it right and put their own stamp on it, but they’re far outnumbered by the pretenders. Take Bonded by Blood here for example – if their name wasn’t enough, their music surely will be as they play the Exodus card prominently, leaving no room for originality.

Don’t get me wrong, they do it well – the musicianship is top notch, and this shit rocks, but I can’t help but think “fake”. After hearing bands like Skeletonwitch, Rumplestiltskin Grinder and Blood Tsunami who not only borrow from the past but add their own splashes to the mix, a band such as Bonded by Blood just does nothing for me. Seriously, if I want Exodus and Forbidden riffs, I’ll listen to Exodus and Forbidden.

On a positive note, the lead work of Alex Lee is beyond brilliant – this kid can shred with the best of them – I can only hope he uses his incredible talent better in the future. His work here is almost enough to make this something worth holding onto, but ultimately, the biggest turn off here for me are the vocals of Jose “Aladin” Barreles, which are a love ’em or hate ’em sort of thing. I find his style grating after a handful of songs.

So in the end, Exiled to Earth is more of the same rehashed Bay Area thrash that the bands debut was. People who can’t get enough of this throwback stuff are sure to eat this up, but for those of us with a more discerning ear, or those who’ve had enough of “the revival” need to look elsewhere for a thrash fix. When’s the next Rumpelstiltskin Grinder due?

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Larry "Staylow" Owens
March 3rd, 2011

Comments

  1. Commented by: Legumbrera

    Do not forget Vektor, whom I think are the best ones with Skeletonwitch.


  2. Commented by: Evil In U

    Didn’t care for their debut so I won’t bother with this one. With a few exceptions, the best part of the thrash revival is seeing all those old-school bands make a comeback and show the kids how it’s done.


  3. Commented by: Staylow

    Legumbrera: I can’t believe I forgot Vektor – they are indeed awesome. Add Nocturnal Fear to that group as well.

    Evil: Completely agree, but all also add those previously mentioned bands. Skeletonwitch and RSG are among my faves now.


  4. Commented by: Old Pick Axe

    A friend of mine from San Antonio tells me that I look JUST LIKE the lead singer of Bonded By Blood. This makes me want to check them out. *smirk*


  5. Commented by: ElMuerte

    I somewhat like this one. I hear a lot of Vio-Lence influence. Maybe it’s just the vocals. Not a bad album, but not great.


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