Excimer is an Egyptian thrash metal band, born in 2013 in Alexandria. This album, their first full-length after an e.p. and a single, was already released in 2014 as a digital only album. A year later, it got picked up by German label Witches Brew who requested to release a CD-version, and with good reason. 'Thrash From Fire' sounds as if it comes straight from the eighties and is hugely inspired by bands like Sodom, Testament and other bands from that era.
The album opens with the hyperspeed thrasher 'Hell On Earth'. This song surely has to power to get those heads banging, and so does the entire album. In fact, simply everything about this album breathes this dirty, apocalyptic atmosphere of the golden era of thrash metal; from the artwork, over the bandlogo to the lyrics and the flashing guitar solos. This is the area where Metallica used to dwell (before they lost their minds), along with Overkill or Vio-Lence.
'Victims Of Plague' is one of my favorites on this album, along with 'Cry War'. Both are fast songs with fierce thrash riffs and quite brutal vocals. The vocals in particular are stunningly intense. They sound somewhere between death growls and blackened shrieks. Along with the high speed of the drums, these vocals often create a thrash-induced black metal feel which is quite awesome.
Besides the obvious influences from the early thrash metal scene, these youngsters also draw influences from the unstable state of their country. 'Provoke The Slaughter' and 'War Terror' really do sound like extreme protest songs while 'The Curse Of Seth' seems to dig into the rich ancient history of Egypt. All of these songs are solid thrash metal songs with a high level of songwriting and musical craftsmanship.
To some people, Excimer might sound a bit outdated, both in music and in production and also in artwork. However, this is exactly the most brilliant aspect on this album. It would fit perfectly between albums by the bands I've mentioned in this review, and if Municipal Waste or Nuclear Assault is in your collection, so should Excimer.