Overkill
The Wings Of War


3.5
great

Review

by Zombiejoejoe USER (5 Reviews)
February 28th, 2019 | 17 replies


Release Date: 2019 | Tracklist

Review Summary: The New Overkill album is a solid slice of Thrash Metal. Nothing More, Nothing Less

I believe we are at the point where I can just say “Overkill released a new record” and be done with this entire review. Since they formed they’ve been one of the more consistent bands in thrash metal with really only one or two stinkers. While their 2000’s work was bit of a slump in their discography, they’ve been on fire since 2010 with the release of Ironbound. Since then, I feel like we’ve become adjusted to having some solid thrash metal from the legendary band until they break-up. Admittedly, The Grinding Wheel did start to show some cracks in the foundation so to speak. It was a really solid album, but it was obvious that there were some problems that needed to be worked out. So, what about The Wings of War❓ Well, it’s nothing particularly new.

Please keep in mind that I don’t think it’s a bad thing that the band haven’t really changed. There’s certainly some comfort in a band you can trust. On this album, they really haven’t betrayed that trust. We’ve got a lot of fun thrash metal here and there are some really good songs. “Head of A Pin” was a fantastic single to release (should’ve been the first one) due to it’s incredibly catchy chorus and the really melodic guitar riff. “A Mother’s Prayer” is another song with a good chorus and a great solo that’s arguably one of the best they’ve head in recent years. Then there’s the more complicated “Distortion” that has a chorus that feels like it’s three different ones put together combined with some really nice guitar riffs and solos. “Hole In My Soul” is another really good song with a catchy chorus and a really nice guitar solo. One of the bigger highlights is “Where Few Dare To Walk” which is almost reminiscent of their 90's work in tone and general pace. It’s a great song too because of the slower and more dramatic riffing and powerful vocals from Bobby and it even has some really solid solos. The overall selection is strong and there is a lot of fun to be had with some of the highlights.

Of course, the highlight of most of these songs is just how good the band sound. Bobby Blitz continues to be the charismatic powerhouse of the group with his fantastic vocals. He brings a lot of personality to tracks like “Batshitcrazy” where he lets himself loose on the chorus in the best way possible. He’s always been a general source of energy in the group and that still applies here. Despite that, the real source of energy here might be Jason Bittner on drums. He keeps all of these songs moving even when they might get less interesting or more stale. His drum fills and rolls on “Out on the Road-Kill” and his powerful drumming on “A Mother’s Prayer” serves as a really strong backbone to the song. The recent inclusion of him into the band has definitely been a worthwhile one and seems to have fired up the rest of the band as well. The guitar duo, Dave Linsk and Derek Tailer, seem to be more inspired compared to The Grinding Wheel. Their riffing is more memorable with a decent amount of variety from the groove of “Where Dare To Walk” to the more standard thrash riff on “Believe In the Fight” or even the more punk-ish energy on “Welcome To the Garden State”. Even better are their solos as they are really good this time around. The fast paced soloing on songs like “Hole In My Soul” and “Batshitcrazy” is a lot of fun to hear along with the more slowed down and melodic solos on something like “Distortion”. Then, there is good old D.D Verni who is a little bit harder to hear than usual. You can still catch him on “Welcome To the Garden State”, “Distortion”, and “Last Man Standing” where he is still being the great bassist that he is.


It’s hard to add much more as this is essentially just another great Overkill album. I would consider tracks like “Welcome To the Garden State” or “Last Man Standing” to be weaker songs, but both would work great in a live setting. The former does sound like a lesser version of “Old School” and the latter is mostly just an alright lead single that doesn’t do enough to stand out besides a neat bridge and some good drumming. Really, this album just continues the streak that Overkill have had since 2010’s Ironbound and it’s arguably slightly stronger than 2017’s The Grinding Wheel. It’s not going to absolutely blow your mind. What it will do is provide a really fun slice of thrash metal that’s bound to get your blood pumping at least. If you’re an Overkill fan, there isn’t a whole lot that should stop you from really enjoying this release. It’s just nice to hear that Overkill are still doing what Overkill does best.


Best Tracks:
"Head of A Pin"
"Bat***crazy"
"A Mother's Prayer"
"Out On the Road-Kill"


user ratings (47)
Chart.
3.1
good


Comments:Add a Comment 
MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
February 28th 2019


8849 Comments


This read really repetitive and a lot of the points you discuss were hardly, if ever elaborated on. I understand that such a tactic itself was meant to be emblematic of the album's average quality, but expand more on that: why do some songs succeed, why do some fail, why are some not notable either way?

It was especially jarring with this sentence: "Second, why did they release “Last Man Standing” as the lead single❓ It’s not a great song and it seems a bit too much like their others which is saying a lot if you think about it."

The whole crux of the review seemed to border on Overkill being consistent and following a straight line, which is portrayed as a good thing if perhaps worry-inducing due to fears of becoming stale. Yet here, the fact that this song is "like their others"--good, solid songs as you say--is a bad thing?

Overall, it was contradictory and not very focused. I'd recommend reading through it again and engaging in some fine-tuning. Hope this is helpful!

Digging: Ni - Pantophobie

Zombiejoejoe
February 28th 2019


13 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Thanks! I'll look into fixing up this review. I got stuck writing this one so, this is actually pretty useful criticism.

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
February 28th 2019


8221 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

In spite of the rating average, review rating is accurate, while I tend to agree with most of the arguments, decently presented therein.



For all its inevitable derivativeness, album kicks serious ass due to the gun blazing rhythm section, namely drummer Jason Bittner, whose hands and feet have breathed new life into the band.



I mean, I can feel a great album spinning when I expect to be bored and yet I listen to it from start to finish with my interest piqued, and when songs do not lose traction towards the end. "Hole In My Soul" is a thrasher.



On another note, I humbly beg to differ about the cheese in "Welcome to the Garden State", the punkiest/crossover-galore song of the album.

Digging: Sordide - Hier Dj Mort

StrikeOfTheBeast
February 28th 2019


5496 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Solid album. \m/

Digging: Behemoth - Demigod

Zombiejoejoe
February 28th 2019


13 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

In retrospect, saying "cheesy" might not have been totally accurate. I just think that gang/crowd vocals sound a bit worse than usual to my ears.

StrikeOfTheBeast
February 28th 2019


5496 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Jason Bittner leaves his mark as usual. He's quite the drummer.

Zombiejoejoe
February 28th 2019


13 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Alright, I looked at MarsKid's criticisms and I rewrote everything, but the opening paragraph.



Hopefully, it's a better read now.

rockarollacola
February 28th 2019


32 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

Disappointing to say the least, considering their previous 4 albums are some of the best thrash records of the new millennium. Has some solid tracks, but a bit too much filler.

StrikeOfTheBeast
February 28th 2019


5496 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

You could say they went overkill on the filler amirite

Allergist
February 28th 2019


534 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I'm a huge Overkill fanboy so maybe I think this album isn't that bad. Lot's of fun tracks on here.

RippingCorpse1986
February 28th 2019


3045 Comments


''I'm a huge Overkill fanboy so maybe I think this album isn't that bad. Lot's of fun tracks on here.''

OverkillFanBoy1981? Hahahaha.

I actually kinda forgot that this new album was released around these days. Will check it eventually I guess, really dug The Grinding Wheel at its time.

As for the review, some suggestions:

''one of the more consistent-ish bands in thrash metal''
Should be one of the most consistent bands in thrash metal. ''-ish'' isn't necessary I think.

Also album titles should be italicised (Ironbound, The Wings of War): [i ]Album title[/ i] (without the spaces).

Otherwise good review.

Allergist
February 28th 2019


534 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

OverkillFanBoy1981? Is that a real user???

RippingCorpse1986
February 28th 2019


3045 Comments


OverkillFanBoy1980, a.k.a. Berry's old account.

Atari
Staff Reviewer
February 28th 2019


24317 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Not as bad as some are making it out to be imo



"Head of a Pin" and "Batshitcrazy" make a good one-two punch

Digging: Madison Cunningham - For the Sake of the Rhyme

Allergist
February 28th 2019


534 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Haha rip Berry



"Head of a Pin" is probably my favorite off of this

StrikeOfTheBeast
February 28th 2019


5496 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Yeah Berry's still here, being tolerated (seemingly) by only Lucca and myself.

ChaoticVortex
March 6th 2019


752 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Yeah this is probably Overkill's weakest since Immortalis, but still has enough in the tank to make a positive impression. Distortion, A Mother's Prayer and Head of a Pin are all solid thrash beats.



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