Photo by Tim Snow
Many people are familiar with “The Big 4” of thrash metal: Metallica, Slayer, Megadeth, and Anthrax. For my money, California’s Exodus is #5 (although many metal nerds may go for Testament). The first time I saw Exodus was with then-new vocalist Rob Dukes, a former guitar tech who had replaced long-time singer Steve “Zetro” Souza. The crowd that night was a little sparse. But over the next few years they delivered three well-received albums and the venues started to fill up again. Guitarist Gary Holt had also started playing with Slayer, a gig which became permanent after the tragic death of Slayer’s Jeff Hanneman.
So it took metal world a bit by surprise when the band announced they would be reuniting with Souza for their upcoming album Blood In, Blood Out. Nearly a week after their appearance at Heavy Montreal I had a chance to speak to Souza on the phone about the new record, his current relationship with the band, and how he feels about performing tracks from the Rob Dukes era.
Blood In, Blood Out will be released on October 14th on Nuclear Blast.