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Album Review

Over the course of 15 albums and a 30-year career, Overkill have proven time and time again that they’re one of the most relentlessly enduring bands in thrash metal. While modern bands have been taking metal into an increasingly esoteric direction, Ironbound shows that sometimes the old ways are the best ways. While the album may not have any studio trickery or meandering prog epics, what it does deliver is a dose of old-fashioned, full-speed-ahead thrash. With a classic combination of crunchy riffage backed by a furious double-bass drum stampede, Overkill delivers straightforward metal aggression without any neo-classical or prog pretensions. On the titular “Ironbound,” guitarists Dave Linsk and Derek Tailer deliver a massive, chugging riff that manages to be intense without ever indulging in meat-headed aggression. Another high point is Bobby “Blitz” Ellsworth’s singing. Even after 30 years and an unfortunate stroke, Ellsworth’s voice is clear and dominant, giving him a commanding presence amongst the excellent guitar work. To be clear, Ironbound isn’t a boldly experimental work or a masterpiece of unfiltered musical virtuosity, and a younger generation of metal fan might not be able to fully appreciate what it represents. What it is, however, is a snapshot of one of the few old-school thrash bands that has actually gotten better with time rather than collapsing under the weight of their own success/excess, giving the listener a look at one of the original heavy hitters of metal who are still at the top of their game and only getting heavier.

Customer Reviews

wrecking everything again

Awesome old school thrash. Easily surpasses the riffless psuedo thrash of Megadeth's "Endgame". This is how it should be done!


Overkill mainstays Bobby Ellsworth and D.D Verni put in an excellent performance on their sixteenth album Ironbound, creating an album of modern Thrash Metal which keeps what is good about the Overkill sound and updates it for the present day, without compromising what made the band’s legacy.
New drummer Ron Lipincki deserves a special mention for his performance on this album, fitting in to the band perfectly and possessing an immense talent, his style isn’t flashy but he really knows how to play for this genre of music and plays with a real authority that gives the album a more three dimensional feel.
In pretty much every way, Ironbound is a pretty excellent album on a technical level; it follows the Thrash Metal formula perfectly but still contains variety. It has a great production job, good lyrics, better musicianship and superb guitar solos. Probably the album’s only flaw is that with this level of technical perfection the album is devoid of ‘character.’
There is nothing on here that sticks in your head for days on end, nothing that raises a wry smile and nothing that is truly unique. Whether or not you enjoy the album is entirely dependent on whether or not you can overlook this lack of character. Though the album lacks that special something which elevates it to classic album status it is far from being one to avoid and shouldn’t be overlooked.
If you haven’t bought an Overkill album since The Years of Decay then Ironbound is the Perfect album to get you into the bands more recent catalogue.
There is a lot to enjoy about Ironbound, from the jagged riffing on ‘In Vain,’ with its fast and heavy verses, to ‘Ironbound,’ which features a soulful Pink Floyd sounding guitar solo in the mid section of an otherwise textbook Thrash Metal number.
Highlight’s include ‘Killing For A Living,’ which evokes the spirit of tracks like ‘Feel The Fire,’ and ‘Evil Never Dies,’ without directly copying them, and the dynamic opener ‘Green and Black.’
If you like Overkill this Shiny Metallic Digipak full of hard, heavy and surprisingly diverse Thrash Metal is certainly worth your money, with its fantastic vocal performance and technically perfect songs being a good reason to check this album out. This may not be the greatest Overkill album ever made, but there is very little you can say against it.


Formed: 1980 in Old Bridge Township, NJ

Genre: Metal

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

New Jersey thrash quartet Overkill were formed in 1980 by vocalist Bobby "Blitz" Ellsworth and guitarist Bobby Gustafson, and also included bassist D.D. Verni and drummer Rat Skates (later replaced by Sid Falck). The band garnered a reputation for brutal, pounding speed and technique, but lacked the musical diversity to compete with heavy hitters like Metallica; still, Overkill built up a strong following in the metal underground with albums like 1985's Taking Over and 1988's Under the Influence....
Full bio
Ironbound, Overkill
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  • £7.99
  • Genres: Rock, Music, Metal
  • Released: 01 February 2010

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