Hostile Defiance; could there be a more apt title for the new album from German thrash veterans Exumer?! This 5th full-length thrash-a-thon, is exactly what its succinct title suggests; a 42-minute thrash attack which incorporates as much malevolent melody as it does unbridled aggression and belies Exumer‘s 30+ year existence.
“We wanted to sonically progress, incorporating more melodic elements in the music as well as more rhythmic variety,” states vocalist Mem Von Stein.
Mission accomplished sir!
Defiant to the end, overall Exumer play thrash the old-school way with balls-out thrashers cosying up to mid-tempo stompers and nothing outstays its welcome. Exumer are lean and mean here, focused on thrashing with 100% authenticity and the result is a short, sharp, shock to the system.
Tracks such as “King’s End” and “Splinter” are, as expected, fucking ferocious with Steve “Zetro” Souza-esque vocal patterns bouncing around Slayer-sized riffing but it’s the more considered likes of “Trapper” and “Descent” which provide the head-bangiest moments. We’re not saying Exumer have evolved into a progressive/technical thrash act per se but they’ve definitely dabbled with dynamics and the result offers a pleasing sense of variety.
A finger in the face to modern society’s overtly controlling ways, Exumer sound as rabid and rancorous as ever and anyone in thrall will Kreator’s post-00’s more melodic output will get a kick out of Hostile Defiance. While not quite in the same league as 2016’s The Raging Tides, Hostile Defiance can still be considered a triumph from these ever-reliable legends of the Teutonic thrash scene! 7/10