Overkill // Ironbound
Rating: 4.0/5.0 —Great! A pleasant thrash surprise!
Label: Nuclear Blast (EU | US)
Websites: wreckingcrew.com | myspace.com/overkill
Release Dates: EU: 29.01.2010 | US: 02.09.2010
“Overkill is still around?” That was my first thought when I received this promo. See, this band is definitely a part of my childhood, being a huge a fan of the record I Hear Black when I was at the tender age of 11, but they were never a band that I ever followed with any religiosity. No, Overkill never managed to make it into my early thrash pantheon, despite the fact that I remember loving that album. So it was with great interest that I put on this album, not really know what to expect at all given everything. I mean, it’s been a lot of years and bands, in general, do not age well. And, after asking around, I’d heard that Overkill hadn’t aged very well, either.
Ironbound, if it’s true the band hasn’t aged well, isn’t representative of such biases. In fact, just the opposite, this record shows Overkill as a dominant thrash metal band on top of their game. While the band has maintained their characteristic sound, which is pretty much thrash with the very characteristic vocal approach of vocalist Bobby “Blitz” crooning (screeching? singing? grunting? How the hell do you describe this guy’s vocals?) over top. The riffs are solid thrash attack triplets and gallops that make you want to break open a beer, put some horns up and headbang all night. There are even some technical parts that really make the thrash fan in me happy to know that in this thrash revival there is a band still producing something worth thrashing to!
Honestly, the impression I get from this record is that the band is back to stay. If they can keep up pumping out tracks with the sharpened hooks and intelligent harmonies and song writing that litters tracks like “Ironbound”, “Bring Me the Night”, “Endless War” and, probably my favorite on the album, “Give A Little,” these guys are totally back to stay. The whole album pounds out of the speakers just like the drunken thrash attack you would expect from these veterans and there isn’t a bad song on this album.
Of course, in my opinion the band probably could have cut off a track or two in order to bring the album down to about 45 minutes, which would’ve made it the perfect length for vinyl and a great length for a thrash metal record. But that said, that I’m complaining about the length and have nothing else really to say other than that should tell you something. This is album is a masterwork of thrash metal in an age of neo-thrash bands who wish they could have the excellence or authenticity of Overkill. If only EVERY band could be putting out albums like this 25 years after their inception.