Tempo of the Damned

Tempo of the Damned is the sixth studio album by American thrash metal band Exodus. Released on February 2, 2004 via Nuclear Blast, Tempo of the Damned was Exodus' first studio release since 1992's Force of Habit.[1] It was the last appearance of longtime vocalist Steve "Zetro" Souza until his return for 2014's Blood In, Blood Out[2] as well as the last appearance of founding drummer Tom Hunting until 2007's The Atrocity Exhibition... Exhibit A.[3] The album was also the last studio appearance of guitarist Rick Hunolt until the band's 2021 album Persona Non Grata, where he made a guest appearance.

Tempo of the Damned
Tempo Of The Damned (musical album).jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedFebruary 2, 2004[1]
StudioTsunami Recordings, Moss Beach, California, Prairie Sun Studio, Cotati, California
GenreThrash metal
LabelNuclear Blast
King Records (Japan)
Dream On Music (Korea)
ProducerAndy Sneap
Exodus chronology
Another Lesson in Violence
Tempo of the Damned
Shovel Headed Kill Machine

Tempo of the Damned is the first Exodus studio album to accredit founding guitarist Kirk Hammett for a song ("Impaler").

This album was released two years to the day after the death of former member Paul Baloff.

Although he produced the band's 1997 live album Another Lesson in Violence, this album was the first time Andy Sneap had produced, mixed, engineered or mastered an Exodus studio album; he would provide either role on the band's subsequent albums.[4]


Tempo of the Damned marked Exodus' first full-length album of new material since 1992's Force of Habit. This is Exodus' first studio album to feature Jack Gibson on bass. This album is also the result of Steve "Zetro" Souza's return to the band, after Exodus reunited with Bonded by Blood-era lead singer Paul Baloff for the release of their live album Another Lesson in Violence in 1997. Baloff died of a stroke in 2002 and Souza was invited back into the band, although this would prove to be the last album to feature him until 2014's Blood In, Blood Out, for he abandoned the group during their tour in South America in support of the album, which resulted in a feud between him and guitarist Gary Holt.[5] Tempo of the Damned was also the last Exodus album to feature longtime guitarist Rick Hunolt. Despite never officially rejoining the band, Hunolt filled in for Holt for European tour in the summer of 2012 due to the latter's commitments with Slayer, and made a guest appearance on their eleventh studio Persona Non Grata (2021). Although this album was also the last to feature drummer Tom Hunting before his second departure, he would later rejoin the band in 2007. Souza would rejoin Exodus as well after his replacement Rob Dukes was fired from the band in 2014.

Tempo of the Damned also marks Exodus' only studio album to contain a song credited to founding member Kirk Hammett, who found greater recognition as a member of Metallica. The others are their 1982 Demo cassette and the 1997 live release, Another Lesson in Violence; the latter featured the song "Impaler". Hammett brought one of "Impaler"'s riffs to the Metallica song "Trapped Under Ice", which was released on their 1984 album Ride the Lightning. Music videos were filmed for the songs "War is my Shepherd" and "Throwing Down," which largely consists of a jam performance.


Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic     [6]

Tempo of the Damned received a positive review from AllMusic's Eduardo Rivadavia, who awarded the album three stars out of five, saying "all of the much loved Exodus hallmarks are here: lyrics filled with biting, sarcastic social commentary: no-fuss, jagged thrash metal; and unparalleled technical precision." He then finished his review by saying that the album "successfully resurrects Exodus as the potent and formidable thrash machine of old."[6]

Tempo of the Damned sold almost 2,600 copies in its first week of release in the U.S.[8] and over 14,300 copies by September 13, 2004 in the U.S.[9]

Track listingEdit

All songs written by Gary Holt except where noted.

1."Scar Spangled Banner" 6:41
2."War Is My Shepherd"Holt, Steve "Zetro" Souza4:27
3."Blacklist" 6:17
4."Shroud of Urine" 4:52
5."Forward March"Holt, Souza7:39
6."Culling the Herd" 6:07
7."Sealed with a Fist" 3:36
8."Throwing Down"Holt, John Miller5:01
9."Impaler"Paul Baloff, Kirk Hammett, Holt, Tom Hunting5:25
10."Tempo of the Damned" 4:22
Total length:54:21
Digipak bonus track
11."Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap" (AC/DC cover)3:52
Japanese edition bonus tracks
11."Shroud of Urine" (demo)4:47
12."Tempo of the Damned" (demo)4:23
Korean edition bonus tracks
11."Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap" (AC/DC cover)3:48
12."Shroud of Urine" (demo)4:47



  • Produced, engineered, mixed and mastered by Andy Sneap
  • Mixed at Backstage Studio Derby UK
  • Recorded at Tsunami Recordings, Moss Beach, California (except Drums Recorded at Prairie Sun Studio, Cotati, California)
  • Cover Artwork by Jowita Kaminska


Chart (2004) Peak
German Albums (Offizielle Top 100)[10] 67


  1. ^ a b "Tempo Of The Damned by EXODUS". Nuclear Blast. Retrieved December 17, 2016.
  2. ^ Monger, James Christopher. "Blood In, Blood Out – Exodus". Allmusic. Retrieved December 17, 2016.
  3. ^ Rivadavia, Eduardo. "The Atrocity Exhibition... Exhibit A – Exodus". Allmusic. Retrieved December 17, 2016.
  4. ^ "Andy Sneap". Allmusic. Retrieved September 6, 2018.
  5. ^ "Exodus Guitarist: 'Fat Ass' Zetro Souza Is 'Human Crap'". Blabbermouth.net. September 13, 2004. Retrieved May 19, 2017.
  6. ^ a b Rivadavia, Eduardo. "Tempo of the Damned – Exodus". AllMusic. Retrieved December 17, 2016.
  7. ^ Krgin, Borivoj (December 27, 2003). "CD Reviews – Tempo Of The Damned Exodus". blabbermouth.net. Retrieved December 17, 2016.
  8. ^ "SOUNDSCAN Report: GUNS N' ROSES, SOIL, EXODUS First-Week Numbers Revealed". blabbermouth.net. March 31, 2004. Retrieved December 17, 2016.
  9. ^ "EXODUS To Recruit Former WARDANCE Singer For South American Tour". blabbermouth.net. September 13, 2004. Retrieved December 17, 2016.
  10. ^ "Offiziellecharts.de – Exodus – Tempo Of The Damned" (in German). GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved November 22, 2021.