Legendary thrash metal pioneers Exodus recently wrapped up their grueling fall tour with one final shredfest in Salt Lake City. But for the band’s guitarist Gary Holt, 2023 wasn’t just about headbanging and mosh pits – it was a rollercoaster of resilience, brotherhood, and shitty incidents.

This year, Holt faced challenges that would test any rocker. A nasty bus fall nearly shattered his pelvis, followed by a harrowing ordeal rescuing his brother from an Italian hospital. The physical and emotional toll forced him to cancel the European leg of the tour, a decision that prioritized his well-being over all else. Later on, he injured his neck and is still recovering from the damage.

“This year has been the hardest I’ve ever dealt with yet massively rewarding. The most injured I’ve ever been on tour,” Holt revealed. “Started the year with a horrible fall off the bus, slipping on an icy step, thought I broke my pelvis. No break. Worst pain ever. For weeks. Keep playing. Had to rescue my brother from an Italian hospital after a horrible accident. Mass turmoil, drama, and stress. Had to cancel Europe for my own mental well-being. Sucked. Fuck my neck up at Blue Ridge Rock Fest. Still fucked up four months later. Find a way to do what I gotta do, even if banging my head harder than all was not on the table.”

Despite the setbacks, Holt’s warrior spirit refused to be silenced. He found solace in new friendships forged among his bandmates and witnessed firsthand the electrifying power of Exodus‘s live performances igniting the audience like a sonic Molotov cocktail.

“Made amazing new friends in my tour mates. Played shows that told all of Exodus that something really cool is happening with this band. We are driven. We care about nothing but crushing you. Fans. Other bands. No matter. We will destroy all.”

With the fire of adversity fueling his creative engine, Holt‘s already plotting Exodus‘s next sonic apocalypse: “Persona Non Grata was a milestone for us. Time to crush it. To all who say they’re about to make the metal record of the year? Hold my NA beer! Thank you to everyone, most of all our band management and crew. Family time. Then time to finish the songs for this next record! The work to deliver the beatings continues.”

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