Culture / Music

Review: Overkill @ Cathouse

Having been on the scene for over 30 years, Overkill made their first ever visit to Glasgow, and the Cathouse was packed to the rafters with fans.

With such a packed venue, it was a risky business going to the bar for a drink. So for support band Xentrix’s set it wasn’t uncommon to see people walking about with a couple of beers in hand and another clasped under an arm. This explains the ice rink of a floor, along with the indoor rain from the roof condensation. Small venue + big crowd = sweat box.

It’s a shame that a cover can sometimes define a band. Xentrix’s tongue in cheek cover of the “Ghostbusters” theme gets most of tonight’s song request chants. Front man Chris Astley puts this to an end telling the crowd they played it last time; instead they focus on other material from their small, but solid back catalogue.

Apart from a minor technical hiccup with the drums, the set was tight. If anything the hiccup worked in their favour. A band that can keep a crowd entertained while in chaos will have them eating out of their hands between songs.

Since their 2013 reunion the band’s profile has continued to rise, thanks to appearances at festivals and strong support slots. This performance surely won over a lot of new fans who may not have been aware of their existence before tonight.

I opened by saying it’s taken 30 years for Overkill to reach Glasgow and it seems like the energy has been building up for this moment. When they take to the stage the crowd go off like the floors been electrified. With a high intensity set-list they don’t get much time to rest.

Official video for ‘Elimination’ (feat. an incredible moustache)

You always expect an older band to show signs of wear and tear, but apart from a few of the higher notes eluding Bobby Blitz, he and the rest of the band show they are still more than relevant in the thrash world. They are more than capable of holding their own against the new bands.

In terms of set selection the band provided a fairly thorough selection from their repetoire, as thorough as you can be with nearly 18 albums to select from. They mixed classics like “Wrecking Crew” in with newer material like “Come And Get It”. The biggest response went to fan favourites like “Elimination” and “Coma” while the closing number, “F*** You” got the most vocal response of the evening.

The only real negative of Overkill’s set was the appalling sound quality. If it wasn’t for Blitz’s classic high singing style breaking through he would have been utterly buried in a muddy mix. Still, the almost constant sea of crowd surfers and pits showed that this audience didn’t particularly care if the quality was perfect, just as long as Overkill were playing.

Follow Chris on Twitter: @Chris_Morton89

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