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In 1978 (noteworthy the same year that Judas Priest released the track "Exciter") HELL RAZOR was formed in Ottawa, Canada. The band consisted of John Ricci (guitars), Dan Beehler (drums) and Allan Johnson (bass).
In 1980 they changed their name to and recorded a demo. This demo was sent to Mike Varney of Shrapnel Records, who included one song from it, "World War III", on the compilation album US Metal Volume II in 1982. Shortly after that was signed to Shrapel Records and in 1983 they released their debut LP, Heavy Metal Maniac.

Later that year signed a 3-record-deal with John Zazula's Mega Force Records and 1984 they released their second album, Violence & Force. This album was recorded in New York and produced by Carl Canedy (The Rods). They toured some dates with ANTHRAX before going on their first U.S. tour with MERCYFUL FATE. The year after changed record company to Music For Nations and travelled to London to record their third LP, entitled Long Live the Loud. This was the last album that the original line-up recorded together. It was produced by MOTORHEAD-producer Guy Bidhead and had clearly better sound than the previous albums and was more straight Heavy Metal than the Speed/Thrash Metal of the first two albums. After this went on an European tour with ACCEPT and later an U.S. tour with MOTORHEAD and MEGADETH. Before the year ended they released the 3-track EP Feel the Knife, which was the last release from the original line-up. Shortly afterwards John Ricci quit the band and was replaced by Brian McPhee.

Brian McPhee marked the beginning of 's more melodic era and his first album was Unveiling the Wicked, released in 1986 by Music For Nations. After the release of Unveiling the Wicked headed out on a very successful European tour with MOTORHEAD and MANOWAR. Then suddenly a drastic decision was made, Dan Beehler would not sing anymore! A new vocalist was found in Rob Malnati who made his debut on the album Exciter (also known as O.T.T.) which was released in 1988 on Canadian label Maze Music. With Exciter (O.T.T.) the band pushed the melodic sound even further, maybe too far. A Canadian tour followed but after that nothing happened...

Until 1991 when emerged again with the line-up: Dan Beehler (drums and lead vocals), John Ricci (guitars) and David Ledden (bass). Together they recorded the song "Born to Kill" which appeared on the compilation album Capitol Punishment released in 1991. In 1992 was sigend by German metal label Noise Records and recorded their sixth LP entitled Kill after Kill. The band went on a three week European tour with RAGE. In 1993 released their first live album, Better Live than Dead, which was recorded in Canada in 1991. Bassist on this album was Jeff McDonnald. The album consisted of songs only from the first three albums. After this release nothing more was heard from in three years time.

In March of 1996 the new line-up was announced consisting of John Ricci (guitar), Jacques Bélanger (vocals), Rik Charron (drums) and Marc Charron (bass). John Ricci and Jacques Bélanger played together in a band called BLACKSTAR in 1985/86. Noteworthy is that Rik and Marc are not related. The new line-up played a few well recieved shows in Canada before releasing the album, The Dark Command.
This album was released in 1997 by Osmose Productions. With one of 's strongest albums the band headed out on a European tour with ANVIL and FLOTSAM AND JETSAM.
Only two festivals gigs were done in 1998-2000, Wacken Open Air 1998 and Bang Your Head 2000, both in Germany. In the summer of 2000 released the follow-up to The Dark Command, which was even harder and more aggressive, named Blood of Tyrants. An album which dealt with the subjects of dictatorship and revolution. In the fall of 2001 Jacques quit the band because of “creative differences“.
A year later Marc quits the band to pursue a career in the high tech industry.
In the beginning of 2003 a new line-up was announced, with John and Rik along with vocalist Rob Degroot and bassist Paul Champagne. This line-up lasted until March of 2003 when Rob Degroot was dismissed after failing to adopt the -style. As his replacement former vocalist Jacques Bélanger stepped in. In 2004 Paul Champagne was let go from the band. They recorded New Testament with John on guitars and bass, which is a "best of"-album of re-recorded -classics. Later that year bassist Clammy joined the ranks. 2004 ended with the band heading out on a European tour with STEEL ATTACK.

In midsummer of 2006, Jacques Bélanger left again due to differences with the band. After a short round of auditions he was replaced by Brooklynite Kenny Winter in October of 2006. At a around the same time, Exciter's relationship with Osmose productions also came to a close. They fielded offers from a variety of labels until deciding Massacre Records would be their new home.
Exciter immediately began co-producing a new album with Canadian engineer Charles