Exodus 2-Fer – Bonded by Blood, and Let There Be Blood

Alright KMA Readers, you’re in for a 2-Fer treat today! Bring on the Exodus!! \m/ \m/

1) Exodus – Bonded By Blood

Groundbreaking debut thrash metal album from the Bay area’s Exodus. I mean, what do you need me to say here? This thing fucking ROCKS! All the elements are here, and it’s absolutely and brilliantly relentless. Seriously, this is the real deal.

My copy (a 1999 reissue) has two bonus live tracks: And Then There Were None, and A Lesson In Violence, performed live at The Astoria, London, England on March 8, 1989. Sweet addition!

Also fascinating: my copy has some cyrillic on the CD and the back cover. It also bears a disclaimer in small white text on the front cover: “Licensed for sale only in Russian federation, Belarus, Ukraine, Kazakhstan. Any sale outside the a.m. territories is unauthorized and without permission of the copyright owner.” Uh oh! Ah well, I won’t tell anyone if you won’t.

ESSENTIAL! \m/ 🙂 \m/

Hit It Or Quit It? HIT!

Here is some further info, as if you needed more prodding:

Bonded by Blood was originally titled A Lesson in Violence, but had its name changed when a suitable cover idea could not be found. An advance cassette copy of the album (with the original title) was widely distributed through the tape-trading network upon the record’s completion late in the summer of 1984, creating an immense underground buzz prior to the official release of the LP. The release was delayed, however, due to problems with the artwork.

The song “Impaler” was originally to be featured on Bonded by Blood, but it was abandoned when Kirk Hammett took the main riff with him to Metallica (it was used on “Trapped Under Ice”).

Also interesting:

Bonded by Blood received a positive review from Eduardo Rivadavia of AllMusic, who states: “Had it been released immediately after it was recorded in 1984, Exodus’ Bonded by Blood might be regarded today alongside Metallica’s Kill ‘Em All as one of the landmark albums responsible for launching the thrash metal wave” and adds that “Exodus were left to wonder what kind of impact they may have had without these setbacks.” Rivadavia also described Bonded by Blood as “an album whose influence far exceeds its actual notoriety, and it remains a crucial piece of the thrash metal puzzle – essential.” Bernard Doe of Metal Forces in 1985 defined it “a classic album in the thrash metal sense which is sure to be sneered at by the unconverted and mainstream media.”

In 2013, Bonded by Blood was ranked number 8 on Whatculture!’s “10 Greatest Thrash Metal Albums of All Time”, and was ranked number 80 on Metalrules.com’s ‘Top 100 Heavy Metal Albums’. In August 2014, Revolver placed the album on its “14 Thrash Albums You Need to Own” list. The album was also ranked at number two on Loudwire’s top ten list of “Thrash Albums NOT Released by the Big 4“.


2) Exodus – Let There Be Blood

This is an interesting release. In 2008, Exodus re-recorded their classic 1985 album Bonded By Blood, but with their line-up at the time, not a re-formed 1985 line-up. Check it:

The only band members who play on both Bonded by Blood and Let There Be Blood are guitarist Gary Holt and drummer Tom Hunting. The track “Hell’s Breath” originally appears on the “1983 Rehearsal” with Kirk Hammett and never was recorded officially.


Let There Be Blood has met mixed reviews. The musical quality of the album has been praised, but reviewers have questioned the need for such a re-make, with Cosmo Lee of Allmusic going so far as to accuse it of being a potential “cash-in” on the original album’s legacy. However, Gary Holt has said that the band was not trying to replace the original, but rather wanted to give the songs “the benefit of modern production.“

What did I hear, when I listened to this? Fuckin’ Exodus mayhem, that’s what! Holy hell, this thing was as punishing and pummelling and relentless as the original. I thought it sounded friggin’ great (per Gary Holt’s comment on modern production). No complaints here!

\m/  YEAH!!! \m/

Hit It Or Quit It? HIT!

14 thoughts on “Exodus 2-Fer – Bonded by Blood, and Let There Be Blood

    1. keepsmealive says:

      Not crazy at all! In fact, their guitarist is currently touring with Slayer on their final tour. Imagine a career playing with Exodus and Slayer. That guy’s a beast.


  1. 80smetalman says:

    My first experience of Exodus was seeing them live. They supported Anthrax that evening and my reaction when I heard them was that I was astounded that mortal men could play at such speed.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. keepsmealive says:

      Whoa, what an intro! I love when that happens, you see a band live without having heard a note previously and you get blown away… that happened to me with Mastodon, and I became a big fan!

      Liked by 1 person

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