EXCEL, the long-defunct punk/metal fusion band from Venice, California, played its first show in 15 years at a private party on March 30 at RVCA in Los Angeles. Video footage of the concert can be seen below.
Greg Saenz, who played drums for EXCEL from 1986 until 1992, told BLABBERMOUTH.NET last summer, “EXCEL are getting back together as a result of EXCEL bassist Shaun Ross and myself jamming with Alex Barreto (CHAIN OF STRENGTH) on guitar in Rialto, California We are going to continue rehearsals in Los Angeles with vocalist Dan Clements, and we are brainstorming a full-on assault of Southern California and hopefully beyond.”
Formed in 1983 under the name CHAOTIC NOISE, the band changed its name to EXCEL in 1985. EXCEL released two albums — “Split Image” (1987) and “The Joke’s On You” (1989) — before guitarist Adam Siegel joined INFECTIOUS GROOVES in 1990. In 1992, Siegel and Saenz left EXCEL to form the power trio MY HEAD. After five years of silence, EXCEL returned to record its third and final album, “Seeking Refuge” (1995), and then broke up for good.
In 2003, former members of EXCEL considered legal action against METALLICA over the song “Enter Sandman”, which they claimed borrowed heavily from the EXCEL track “Tapping Into The Emotional Void”. (“Tapping” was originally included on EXCEL‘s “The Joke’s On You” LP, which surfaced in 1989 — two years prior to the release of METALLICA‘s self-titled CD.)