OVERKILL Announces Complete 'Scorched' Album Details, Shares 'The Surgeon' Visualizer
January 27, 2023
New Jersey thrash metal veterans OVERKILL will release their twentieth studio album, "Scorched", on April 14 via Nuclear Blast Records. The official the visualizer for the LP's first single, "The Surgeon", can be seen below.
OVERKILL singer Bobby "Blitz" Ellsworth comments, "Man, it seems like for F-in ever since we chatted!!!! Ha! I tell you what, this is the longest ever between OVERKILL releases, Feb '19 to April '23. For me, it became my 'peterpandemic' go-to. I wrote my part, tore it down, then again and again. I found myself still changing parts while Colin [Richardson] was mixing! It became the normal in a very abnormal time, sanity amongst the insanity. Somewhere in 'Scorched' that is all reflected, a common thread, it is the place I went to get what I needed, maybe what "we" needed. It's different, that's for sure an old-school approach/mix in a modern world....was it worth the wait? You tell me.......see ya on the road! Horns up!"
"Scorched" offered a new recording environment for OVERKILL as all members were able to record on their own. The mixing of the record was handled by Colin Richardson and his assistant engineer Chris Clancy. Johnny Rodd helped with producing vocals, and finally, Maor Appelbaum took over mastering and adding finishing touches. The band returned to artist Travis Smith to create the album cover art.
"Scorched" track listing:
01. Scorched 02. Goin' Home 03. The Surgeon 04. Twist Of The Wick 05. Wicked Place 06. Won't Be Comin Back 07. Fever 08. Harder They Fall 09. Know Her Name 10. Bag O' Bones
OVERKILL performed "Wicked Place" during its December 9, 2022 concert at the Ruhrpott Metal Meeting in Oberhausen, Germany. Fan-filmed video of that performance can be seen below.
The name of the upcoming OVERKILL LP was revealed last month by drummer Jason Bittner in a social media post. He shared a few photos of the band's appearance at Ruhrpott Metal Meeting and included the following message: "Last one of the year!!!! See you in 2023 with 'Scorched' - the 20th album in the OVERKILL catalog!"
This past August, Ellsworth told Neuborn Open Air Festival about the band's upcoming LP: "Well, I wrote the record three times — my end of the record, I wrote it three times — and I destroyed the first two of them, because it was being influenced by the pandemic, and I don't think we've ever been those type of people. I started listening and I said… I'm not the most upbeat person when it comes to the presentation of music, but I think that if you compare OVERKILL to other bands in this scene, we don't always take the negative road; we try to take the positive road for things. And the pandemic led me to go on a different path, and I didn't wanna do that. So I tore the whole record down and rewrote it once I saw that stuff was opening… But it made me feel more comfortable with the fact that, okay, this is fresh, it's current. It's not something that was written in 2020. It was written in fucking '22, and it's gonna be recorded in '22. So it's a good feeling right now."
Earlier in the year, OVERKILL bassist D.D. Verni told Hardrock Haven about the progress of the recording sessions for the band's 20th studio album. He said: "I had almost all of it written when we went out on the tour before COVID, 'cause that's where we were in our cycle. So I had to have my part — the music for the record — pretty much done. I had two songs left that I had to do when I got back home. 'Cause that's where we needed to be, 'cause the record was supposed to come out in the fall of that year or whenever. But then we were, like, 'We've got a little extra time.' And then we had more extra time."
He continued: "It was funny, because usually I'll kind of demo up everything at home, all the songs, and I'll send it out to the guys, and then they'll learn the stuff from the demo and then we'll get together and play. [And then we'll decide] 'Maybe it should be faster or slower' — we kind of noodle around till it feels good in the room. But we weren't able to do that 'cause of COVID. But now that it's taken so long, we could have done that. So, I don't know exactly… This one's still gonna be a bit of an odd record 'cause it was kind of done all remotely — everything. We're gonna put out a record of songs that we've not one single time stood in a room and played together."
As for the musical direction of the new OVERKILL material, Verni said: "Compared to the other ones… It's hard to say. It's maybe got a little bit more SABBATH-y kind of parts in it, a little bit more doomy.
"I know Colin Richardson's gonna mix it," he added. "Poor Colin. We thought we were gonna do it, and then we pushed him off, and then we pushed him off again, and then we pushed him off again. An we said, 'You know what? We'll call you when we're ready.' So whenever that's gonna be, we'll call him again. But we're psyched about that 'cause he's just great. He's a great mixer and a great producer. So if nothing else, it'll sound great."
Richardson previously worked with OVERKILL on 1997's "From The Underground And Below", 2000's "Bloodletting" and 2003's "Killbox 13".
Regarding the sound of the new OVERKILL material, Blitz told 69 Faces Of Rock: "It's gonna be hard to figure it out for me until it actually takes shape. It seems a little bit more eclectic for us. It's riff driven, not rhythm driven. The songs will contain two or three different riffs throughout it — the main [riff] and then two that are kind of secondary riffs, which I think is a little bit unique for us, to be singing over something like that. Heavy, of course. I mean, there's some sledgehammer stuff on it — that kind of big, thick groove. I think the other side of it is that it shows kind of experienced speed, would be the word. Some of them just take off."
In June 2020, Ellsworth told A&P Reacts that the band's new songs were "a natural progression from 'The Grinding Wheel'  and 'The Wings Of War' . I think when we had done the 'Ironbound' record , it almost became like a trilogy in there — it was kind of like 'Ironbound', 'The Electric Age'  and 'White Devil Armory' , and they seemed to be the Father, Son and the Holy Ghost kind of a thing," he said. "I think we kind of broke the mold a little bit with 'The Grinding Wheel', and then I think a little bit more with 'The Wings Of War'. And on this one, I see it way more. And what I mean by that is that we've used other tools from our toolshed in the past, and that's the slow grind that is coupled with that fast gallop. So it feels like a natural progression, but maybe two records ahead of what 'The Wings Of War' is. And that's probably as objective as I can be."
OVERKILL spent most of 2019 and early 2020 touring in support of its 19th studio LP, "The Wings Of War", which was released four years ago. The disc was recorded at Gear Recording Studio in New Jersey, SKH Studio in Florida and Jrod Productions with engineering handled by Verni and guitarist Dave Linsk. The album was produced by the band while Chris "Zeuss" Harris took care of the mixing and mastering. Travis Smith (NEVERMORE, OPETH, SOILWORK, DEATH) was again enlisted to create the artwork for the album.
"The Wings Of War" marked OVERKILL's recording debut with Bittner (SHADOWS FALL, FLOTSAM AND JETSAM),who joined the band in 2017.
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