SoCal punk-hardcore-metal hybrid outfit EXCEL has remastered their seminal 1989 release, The Joke’s On You.
Originally released via Caroline Records, and produced by Randy Burns (Megadeth, Kreator, Possessed), The Joke’s On You is EXCEL‘s second full-length, which saw wide acclaim from thrash, punk, metal, and skate rock circles, as members have been known to share ramps with pros Christian Hosoi, Eric Dressen, and Tony Alva, and others. Drawing influence from a diverse range of artists including Black Sabbath, Black Flag, Jimi Hendrix, and early era-Corrosion Of Conformity, people often talk of “crossover” acts, but none quite do it as exceptionally well as EXCEL.
The Southern Lord reissue of The Joke’s On You, remastered by Brad Boatright at Audiosiege (Poison Idea, Integrity, Nails) contains the twelve tracks featured on the original CD edition, including the track “Blaze Some Hate” — initially released as a 12″ single via Caroline, not the original release of the LP – appears as the closing track of the new reissue/remaster. This isn’t the first time Southern Lord has documented the importance of EXCEL either, as the label also reissued the band’s first album, Split Image, in 2014.
Formed in 1984 from the remains of Los Angeles hardcore band Chaotic Noise, EXCEL caught wide attention of the masses with the release of their Personal Onslaught demo (1985). Fellow Californian thrash crossover influencers, Suicidal Tendencies, accelerated EXCEL into wide acclaim with frontman Mike Muir’s inclusion of them on his Welcome To Venice compilation (1985) and releasing EXCEL‘s Split Image debut LP on the Suicidal Records imprint. Sold out tours and further successful releases soon followed, all which stomped over various sonic terrains whilst always spreading a punk attitude and a harbored love for heavy metal.