On April 16, 2016 fans showed up in droves for a gathering to celebrate the mighty OVERKILL, and the 25th anniversary of the landmark Horrorscope album. But there was something else to be celebrated that night. And that was the 30th anniversary of the band’s debut record, the one that started this fucking ride, Feel the Fire!! The boys would play BOTH albums for one night only, in Oberhausen, Germany, back-to-back. Two years later we now have OVERKILL Live In Overhausen (out now, Nuclear Blast Records) to commemorate this special night. Lemme tell ya something, okay? When this fucking thing hit me like a hammer a few weeks ago I thought I was gonna have a stroke. It is fucking merciless from first note to last.
“Coma”, “Infectious”, “Blood Money”, and “Thanx For Nothin’ “ ratchet up the intensity to 11, and all the band members sing and play like they’re 30 years younger. The guilty parties include vocalist Bobby “Blitz” Ellsworth”, bassist D.D. Verni, the twin guitar attack of Derek “The Skull” Tailer and Dave Linsk, and touring drummer Eddy Garcia. This is important because Mr. Garcia stepped up in a big way to help the band, and this live album is a brilliant testament to that. He nails all the parts and then some. “Bare Bones” and especially “Horrorscope” sound much better than their studio counterparts, by the way. There is this extra something that just makes you wanna slam your forehead through a plate glass window. And I love that!
The crowd really goes nuts for “New Machine” and “Live Young Die Free”, the latter of which I’d love to see/hear live in person one day. “Nice Day – For a Funeral” is just so fucking cool in that it reminds me of a reanimated killer who just grabs a coed’s head and shoves it through a wall as blood sprays everywhere. On the Feel the Fire front, we’ve got such cool fare like “Raise the Dead” and “Rotten to the Core”, before coming to “Hammerhead” which not only buries the studio version, it spits on its grave. “Feel the Fire” is anchored by Verdi’s bass and Garcia’s digga digga double bass drum patterns. Such a fucking great song!! Then “Kill At Command” comes along and kicks your face in!
The live disc closes with standards “Overkill” and “Fuck You”, which is, as always, a perfect one-two punch to end off the night. We, the OVERKILL faithful live for nights like this, trust me. I really would have loved to watch the video portion of this concert, but all we as reviewers get is a lousy YouTube link. And when you have a day job, and then come home to a busybody like Mini-Amps, good luck sitting in front of a laptop for two hours and change. Guess I’ll have to order a physical copy, as should all of you. But hey, OVERKILL Live In Overhausen is a winner from beginning to end!! And every metalhead worth their salt needs to own this one!!
STANDOUT TRACKS: “Hammerhead”, “Horrorscope”, “Live Young Die Free”, “Rotten to the Core”, “Coma”, “Overkill”, “Fuck You”, “Infectious”, “Blood Money”, Kill At Command”
RATING: A FUCKIN’ 10/10!!!