Overkill – I Hear Black (Atlantic 1993)

This is my least favorite Overkill record.

I see this as a sort half way album for Overkill. The thunderous heaviness of WFO, Killing Kind and Bloodletting is a few years off. The speed and aggression of their eighties material is also waning, and we are left with something in between, with hints of what’s to come and what has been.

The title track has a solid beat, but a weak chorus, which kind of ruins the whole thing and the track falls flat on its back. World of Hurt is the definite highlight of the record. The mainriff is cool as hell and the vocals have that certain snare and spin that is one of my favorite things about Blitz’ vocals.

One of the things that make this a unique Overkill album is the amount of boring, uninteresting and bland songs that just don’t go anywhere. Songs like Feed My Head, Shades of Grey, Dreaming in Columbian and Undying all seem like rather weak filler materiel.  Spiritual Void has a hint of the great groovy material that was to follow this album, but the melody sucks.

Weight of the World has enough of the speed and power to make it interesting , but it falls short in the end, again the chorus is too weak. What’s the point of Ghost Dance? A two minute intermission kind of thing?

Before I leave off, I will just take a few seconds to complain about the production. These days (2015/16) there are all these bands trying to be louder than one another. I Hear Black has a different approach; all the instruments are packed so hard together that they become completely interchangeable, but it’s done in a very quite way. The sound is sort of soft, lacking edge and energy, it seems like all the instruments have been pulled down in the mix. In stead of a wall of sound, you get maybe like a grassy knoll of sound. Soft and quiet.

DD usually has a very distinctive bass sound, powerful and “gut punching”. He is in there, you can pick him out in the sound every now and again, bur for the most time it’s just guitars and drums.

Recommended downloads: World of Hurt


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