Slaughter in the Vatican

(Roadrunner, 1990)

Total running time: 41:46

1. Death in Vain5:33
2. Homicide3:14
3. Desecrator6:08
4. Exhorder5:12
5. The Tragic Period7:08
6. Legions of Death4:33
7. Anal Lust2:35
8. Slaughter in the Vatican 7:19

Kyle Thomas - Vocals
Vinnie Labella - Guitar/Bass
Jay Ceravolo - Guitar/Bass
Chris Nail - Drums

The Law

(Roadrunner, 1992)

Total running time: 38:43

1. Soul Search Me4:50
2. Unforgiven3:53
3. I Am the Cross4:32
4. Un-Born Again2:49
5. Into the Void6:06
6. The Truth3:25
7. The Law4:48
8. Incontinence3:45
9. (Cadence of) The Dirge 4:30

Kyle Thomas - Vocals
Vinnie Labella - Guitar
Jay Ceravolo - Guitar
Franky Sparcello - Bass
Chris Nail - Drums

"The Law" is Ex-Horder's second and final full length release. This release is a dramatic improvement over the band's first full length, "Slaughter in the Vatican", in my opinion. Not only is the production much improved on "The Law", but the music is much more coherent and intense. While "Slaughter in the Vatican" was a more typical Thrash Metal release featuring no overly distinguishing qualities, "The Law" is very similar to Pantera's "Cowboys from Hell".

Like "Cowboys from Hell", "The Law" features fast, precise, synchronized rhythm guitar and drums. While there are definite resemblances between the vocals on these two releases, Ex-Horder's vocalist, Kyle Thomas, is not a replica of Pantera's Phil Anselmo. He has a distinct sound that is easily recognizable and which is more raw than Phil Anselmo's. There is also no clean singing on "The Law", but there are some limited vocal harmonies. The lead guitar on this release is decent but not extremely impressive. This is a rhythm based release though, so this is not really detrimental to the music. There are some scattered instances of nice 12-string acoustic guitar throughout the release, generally during intros or outros, which help add a bit of diversity to the music.

Track five, "Into the Void", is a Black Sabbath cover, but Ex-Horder managed to transform it into an excellent Thrash piece which fits into this release very well. The second to last track, "Incontinence", is an instrumental. This track is basically similar in style to other tracks on this release with the exception that there are no vocals.

Overall, Ex-Horder's "The Law" is one of the best and most intense releases of Thrash Metal I have heard. I highly recommend this release to anyone who enjoys fast, heavy Thrash and especially to those who enjoy Pantera's "Cowboys from Hell".