I remember standing in the street in 1986 screaming ‘I AM POSSESSED BY… FIIIIRRRRRREEEEEE!!!!!!’ At the top of my longs repeatedly until the Police arrived and told me to shut up. I did of course - I'm not that much of a rebel- but whenever I hear that song, from Exumer’s diabolically good debut I always allow myself a little chuckle and pat myself on the back at the thought of it all. The year after that Exumer brought out another album that didn’t quite fire up young Mick’s imagination in the same way and then… silence.
So imagine how surprised I was to find, twenty five years later the band have pulled their fingers out and released a third album. Twenty five years! A quarter of one of your earth centuries! And here it is! To say I was interested in hearing said werk would be an understatement.
And then I listened to the damn thing and… deflation. Fire & Damnation ain’t a bad record – it’s got all the hallmarks of proficient Teutonic thrash that you can ask for – but it just sounds a little uninspired, a little by-numbers for this reviewer’s liking. I don’t really want to keep going back to the past, but there was an unhinged, mayhemic streak in Exumer’s debut that they just can’t recreate here (if they were even trying…) and though the likes of Crushing Point and Tribal Furies are good in themselves, they just don’t cause enough of a stir to get me really excited. Guitarists Ray Mensh and H.K. pull out some neat riffage, and drummer Matthias Kassner has a gratifyingly old-school thrash drumming style – but there’s not much else to report that might make you get off the couch and off to the record shop. Good, but not really great.