Overkill Slayed at Packed HOB

April 30th, 2019

New Jersey thrash legends Overkill really heated up East Fourth this past Sunday evening at the House of Blues.  Headlining a massive three-band lineup,  the crowd seemed ready for the first big metal show of the upcoming concert season.

First up was Mothership, a Dallas-based outfit who sounds more like a southern rock band, a la Skynyrd. At first, this band didn't seem to fit the bill with two thrash legends, but the three-piece was well-received and did a heck of a  job warming up the crowd with a short but heavy five-tune set. If you're a fan of Corrosion of Conformity this band deserves your attention. 


Up next was San Francisco legends Death Angel. The band opened with "Thrown To The Wolves" from their comeback release The Art Of Dying. Pulling out the classic "Seemingly Endless Time" from Act III  pulverized the crowd. Not taking a breath, they offered up the title track off the forthcoming album Humanicide. The Bay Area legends impressed. If this song is any indiciation of how the new release is going to sound, thrash band fans are in for a real treat. Ending their set with the opening of The Ultra Violence, flowing into "Kill As One," from their debut disc, left the fans hungry for more. We need a headline tour with this band, please. 


Capping the night off were New Jersey thrash legends Overkill. Lead by the incomparable Bobby "Blitz" Ellsworth, these Jersey boys opened with the crowd-pleasing l"Last Man Standing" from their latest drop, Wings Of War.

With the crowd on fire after a killer version of "Deny The Cross," Blitz gave a shout out to Cleveland Metal On Metal radio host Bill Peters. A local metal legend in his own right, Peters has been a long time supporter of the band. With a tongue-in-cheek banter, Blitz told the crowd that they've "Been doing this a long time" and then proceeded to check his pulse, and exclaimed "Nope, ain't dead yet motherfucker!" Ending the set with a pair of classics "Feel The Fire" and "Rotten To The Core," the band left the stage. 


Making their way back on stage they slayed the crowd with "Iron Bound." Of course before it was over we got the obligatory "Welcome To The Garden State."  Finally, finishing off with a reprise of the socially-polite tune "Fuck You."

Blitz, one of thrash metal's best frontmen ever, is still entertaining. And, after 35-plus years, OverKill is still churning out quality releases year after year. 

Review and Photos by John Faddis

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