Written by Alex Stojanovic
Mean Green Killing Machine
Our Finest Hour
The Long Road
Let's All Go To Hades
Red, White & Blue
The Grinding Wheel
Release Date: February 10, 2017
Label: Nuclear Blast Records
Bobby "Blitz" Ellsworth - Lead vocals Dave Linsk - Lead guitars & backing vocals
Derek "The Skull" Tailer - Rhythm guitars & backing vocals D.D. Verni - Bass & backing vocals Ron Lipnicki - Drums
Captivating choruses are found throughout the album, namely on the grooving opener "Mean Green Killing Machine" and "Goddamn Trouble". Bobby Blitz is sounding fantastic as usual. He sounds like he's in his prime with those ultra-high shrieks. As I mentioned above, there's more groove on this album and some great examples of this would be "Shine On" and "Come Heavy". The latter, as cheesy as the title may sound, is such a headbanger with a bouncy swinging groove guaranteed to get you moving. You can't help but smile and nod as Blitz yells "Come heavy, or don't come at all". The production is as sharp as ever and just a bit better than White Devil Armory I think. The riffs coming from the arsenal of Dave Linsk and Derek Tailer are among some of the finest they've ever played, and D.D. Verni and Ron Lipnicki are on fire in the rhythm section.
We then come to "Red, White & Blue" and "The Wheel", where the band head back into classic thrash territory. They're followed by the closing title track, which is the track that ties the whole album together. Just try not to get goosebumps as you listen to the last 2 minutes of the track, it sounds so haunting. When you hear it, you'll know what I mean and it can be referred to as Overkill's "Hallowed Be Thy Name". The album's only flaw is "Let's All Go To Hades". Musically, it's not terrible, it's just that the lyrics in the song lean more towards the silly side. Aside from this minor flaw, Overkill continue the winning streak of quality albums, and The Grinding Wheel is proof that after 35 years, there's still plenty of gas in the tank. This album just grabs you by the balls and punches you in the face like any Overkill or thrash record should.
Highs: "Mean Green Killing Machine" and "Come Heavy"
Lows: The somewhat silly lyrics on "Let's All Go To Hades".