Sunday, October 9, 2011

Overkill-Ironbound

It’s been awhile since my last thrash metal review, so I guess I’ll tell you about what is now one of my favorite thrash albums of all time. The 2010 thrash metal masterpiece known as Ironbound has had a great influence on my whole general outlook on thrash metal. I first heard about Overkill about a year or so ago when I saw a flyer saying that they were going to be playing in Seattle on their 25th anniversary tour. If I had the time I would have gone, but unfortunately, one of my friends went without me. The next day he came to me and said it was one of the best thrash metal acts he had ever seen. But for some reason I didn’t bother to actually look up their music until about two months ago. And the first album that I got was Ironbound.

Now there is a huge dispute amongst metalheads over what thrash metal has turned into and if it’s still alive or if it’s turned into something else, as well as if it’s still any good or not. I tend to disagree with the people that claim thrash metal died in the 90s. But I love the 80s thrash metal era with classics like Reign in Blood, Pleasure to Kill, Master of Puppets, Welcome to Hell, etc. But I love a lot of more recent thrash metal bands like Bonded by Blood, Warbringer, and Black Breath. In fact, my favorite thrash metal band of all time is Havok, a band that formed in the 21st century. But there are a lot of thrash metal bands that formed in the 80s and are still around that have gone more on the progressive side (Metallica, Death Angel, Megadeth, etc.). I guess if it was up to me, I would put Overkill somewhere in the middle. Because they’re not 100% traditional thrash metal, but they haven’t gone completely progressive like Metallica. I think this is a perfect place to be because Overkill adds twists of other kinds of music into their blazing thrash inferno.

The musicianship amongst the members of the band is quite prominent. The member that’s been with the band for the least amount of time would be the drummer who joined in 2005, right after the release of Killbox 13. I think that Killbox 13 was their first truly good album since The Years of Decay. And ever since Killbox 13, they’ve gone nowhere but up, so I think that their current drummer has had something to do with that. Bobby is one of my favorite thrash vocalists; mainly because he doesn’t have a super high-pitched voice. I don’t really know what it is about that but it kind of bothers me when thrash metal vocalists have a really high voice. Some examples of vocalists like that would be the vocalist of Destruction, Bonded by Blood, Megadeth, and Sodom. But Blitz has his voice at the perfect pitch; so that earns him a lot of points from me.

I’ve always wondered why I didn’t run into these guys earlier. I’ve been exposed to just about every other major thrash band, so why didn’t I come across these guys back in middle school like I did with Slayer, Kreator, Exodus, and many others? So overall, this is an amazing album and I would give it a perfect score.