First, a bit of history: OVERDRIVE was formed in 1980, with a debut EP, “Reflexions”, getting self-released some 27 years ago, in 1981. Depending on the month and day, I may not have been born yet. 1983 saw the band release “Metal Attack” and ‘84 brought about “Swords And Axes”, both via Planet Records, then OVERDRIVE split for 13 years. Two reunions would take place, one short-lived in 1997, and another more permanent in 2005. Now here we are in 2008 and OVERDRIVE’s third full-length is finally here. Twenty-four years is awful long between releases, but for true Heavy Metal fans, it was worth the wait.
OVERDRIVE present a sound that we’ve all heard countless times before, somewhere between DIO and JAG PANZER. From the vocals, to the guitar tone to the production, everything is very ‘80s on “Let The Metal Do The Talking”. Okay, the production may be a stretch, as it’s clearer and punchier that anything from the classic era, but it still possesses a raw quality that fits the style.
The album opens with “Army Of Darkness” (a homage to the classic Evil Dead series perhaps?), which is possibly the best track on the album. It’s on the faster end of mid-paced and features a killer chorus without resorting to nursery-rhyme reciting. From there, the album sticks in the mid-paced range, but still rocks out with abandon. “Deceived” is the one track that rivals the opener for supremacy on “”Let The Metal…”. It’s got a great dark atmosphere that only band’s of this ilk seem capable of pulling off, and the main riff and solo are both pretty killer. Even though those two tracks stand above the rest, there isn’t a song to be found that won’t get the blood of true warrior pumping.
All in all, I have to say that’s more like it. Following up a lackluster Metalcore album with some True Molten Steel can’t be topped. Sure it’s clichéd, but who the hell cares? Certainly not the leather and denim crowd that this style is made for. And when a Metal album makes me want to throw the horns up and headbang, as “Let The Metal Do The Talking” most certainly does, how could I possibly ask for more?
(Online March 22, 2008)