Overkill - Ironbound
Release Date: February 9th, 2010
Record Label: E1 Metal
CD Review by Andrew
My rating points: 8 out of 10
1. The Green and Black (8:12)
2. Ironbound (6:33)
3. Bring Me The Night (4:15)
4. The Goal Is Your Soul (6:40)
5. Give A Little (4:41)
6. Endless War (5:41)
7. The Head and Heart (5:10)
8. In Vain (5:12)
9. Killing For a Living (6:14)
10. The SRC (5:07)
New Jersey thrashers Overkill return after a gap of almost three years with their 15th studio release. It comes out in February and all the thrash fans out there can feel lucky to be able to treat themselves with some great music so early in the year! Here's a track-by-track review.
The album starts off in blistering fashion with the song 'The Green And Black'. Bobby gives indications that he still has what it takes to be a great vocalist. The riffs are solid and their combination with the ultra-fast drumming gives us a great track. The bass solo is delightful to hear, leading into the excellent guitar solos at the end. The lyrics are easy to follow and should make for a great sing-along. If this track is anything to go by, this album is going to truly rock!
The title song 'Ironbound' comes next. It takes off where the previous song left and as stated by Bobby himself in an interview with me, you can already feel that the album is very cohesive and each song compliments the one previous to it, something that cannot necessarily be said about other Overkill records. It is another very solid song, with some breathtaking double bass drums backing it all the way. Even the lyrics seem like a continuation of the first song. The interlude is quite melodious and very well followed up with another crisp solo.
The next song 'Bring Me The Night' keeps up with the tempo that's being set so far. The performance on vocals is the best of three songs so far. The lyrics have more of an attitude in them as well. This is a flat-out rocker, much shorter in length as compared to the previous two and pretty much flies by, knocking down the listener on the floor with its speed and brutality. This will definitely be a great live song and should tear up many a venue on their upcoming tour.
Track four 'The Goal Is Your Soul' is the first occasion where the listener experiences a slight drop in tempo to start with. Having said that, overall it is not a slow song by any means. The song gradually builds up speed after the slowest part of it, the interlude and ends on a pace at par with the first three songs. It isn't the best song on this record but a pretty solid one nonetheless.
The next song 'Give A Little' is of a slightly progressive nature. The various changes in vocal pitch and speed in this one will have the fans enjoying some slow as well as fast head banging. The band has been able to pack a lot of punch even into a short song like this, showing that you don't always need a 15 minute long song to fill in the musical depth and variations you want to showcase.
'Endless War' keeps the relentless brutality going even more than the other songs because there isn't really a slow interlude in this one. The song never lets up in its speed and the music certainly suits the theme of the lyrics here. A song very well placed in the album I must say, making sure that the album is neither top-heavy nor bottom-heavy.
The next track 'The Head And Heart' is another one of those with a very gradual build-up. It doesn't go that well with the other songs in the album and stands out as the single most unique song, or the odd one out, whichever way you want to look at it. But still, some of the guitar work is its saving grace and is worth listening to repeatedly.
'In Vain' is yet another typically thrashing tune. It's a good song but doesn't have any outstanding qualities. But again it fits in very well with the album and sort of solidifies the whole effort. I can imagine circle pits going as wild as in any other Overkill song if and when this is played in front of a live audience.
The first few seconds of the song 'Killing For A Living' are just a little too similar to Metallica's 'Damage Inc', but the rest of the song is surely an honest and original effort and doesn't stray much from the norm of the other songs, having its fast and slow parts and being kept heavy throughout.
The album comes to a close with the track titled 'The SRC'. The band have got the ordering of their compositions close to perfectly right as this sounds like a very good last song. It sort of represents the style of music this album is all about and leaves an impression on the minds of the listeners which would make them go back and listen to track 1 again.
Although the structure of almost every song is pretty much the same, it doesn't get boring, at least to me it doesn't. In my opinion, bands should stick to the style of song writing that they are most comfortable with and something that works best for them. Trying to change it up drastically just for the sake of doing it, isn't what I like to see. I'm glad Overkill here are doing what they do best.
My picks for best songs here would be 'Green And Black', 'Ironbound', 'Bring Me The Night' and 'Endless War'. The album should appeal to all Overkill fans old and new, and shouldn't disappoint people. This promises to be one of the better albums being released this year.