OVERLORDE SR - MEDIEVAL METAL TOO (Heaven And Hell Records)
(Review by Stefan)
Another album which falls under the category of Heaven And Hell Records’ “Lost Relics” series comes from North Carolina based Overlorde SR. Warning: do not be confused with Overlorde from New Jersey! Make notice of the fact that the initials SR (Still Rocking) were later on added to their moniker to get rid of possible confusions. “Medieval Metal Too” has the band’s two demo’s on board – a highly form of appreciation is on my side with an album like this, actually a ‘reborn classic’ available on CD for the first time!
Overlorde originates from a late seventies band named Fantasy those who played only cover songs from good old ZZ Top, Bad Company and stuff back then. Guitarist George Koerber entered the Fantasy ranks after a while, one led to another and along with bassist Darrell Collins, both started to write own songs, inspired by AC/DC and Judas Priest. They even formed a new band named Rheagan who decided to give their music a more Metal character spiced with NWOBHM influences. Back in 1980 Ronald Reagan won the US Presidency and the band rapidly changed their moniker into Overlorde so not to be associated with Mr. Reagan’s silly world of politics. Axeman George and bass fiddler Darrell were determined to take the world by surprise with their own way of Heavy Metal music, even the fact they knew in advantage that the mission won’t be easy to survive. A few other members fulfilled the line-up, first original track Overlorde ever created was entitled ‘Under Fire’ and was strongly demanded to be played by the fans at live performances.
But it was time for a next step, the recordings of a first 3 song demo called “Medieval Metal” (1985). Those days released on cassette tape, Medieval Metal eventually selling 10.000 copies worldwide and that is an extremely big success! Fans, labels and general media sources were so satisfied, soon after the release Brian Slagel (Metal Blade Records) came on with a contract for the song ‘Keeper Of The Flame’ to be included on the label’s mighty strong compilation series called Metal Massacre. ‘Keeper Of The Flame’ is one of the highlights on MM Volume 8 (1987), a fantastic compendium featuring different types of Metal music, I still cherish these series with all of my heart! Also in 1987, Overlorde SR created a second three song demo and a cover from Classic/Folk Rock duo Zager & Evans’ “In The Year 2525”.
Actually a shame and hard to understand why they never got a fair chance to sign a decent contract. The band sold loads of demo tapes, so many people that were satisfied with their contribution on Metal Massacre but when the time was right to get something in return (such as the signing of a contract), everybody turned his back. An unfair situation to me and unfortunately, the end was in sight.
That’s why Heaven And Hell’s compilation “Medieval Metal Too” has such an impact on me. Actually it’s an anthology because all of the songs ever created are audible on the CD. Eight songs of pure US Heavy/Power Metal with a serious nod to NWOBHM. Unique vocals and chopping/galloping riffs to work contagious, leads mostly delivered in a melodic manner, bass and drum works feel good to each other. You will hear besides the original demo version of ‘Keeper Of The Flame’ also the original version recognizable from the Metal Massacre Volume 8 edition… awesome! More good old US Metal memories appear with highlights as ‘Full Speed Ahead’, ‘Enchantress Of The Night’, ‘So Be It’ and ‘Trouble’ featuring a different type of singer, more screamy!
This kind of albums always get a very special place in my own CD collection, they are carefully placed in my esteemed department called ‘most highly appreciated Classic US Metal albums’. Everything points in the direction that Overlorde SR seems to be resurrected and that’s great news for all us, US Metal defenders! Can we expect a new album or not? I will ask about that and more during an interview I’d like to set up with the band soon. “Medieval Metal Too” is a mighty good release to those craving for good old, purebred US Heavy/Power Metal. Purchase possibilities via: http://www.heavenandhellrecords.com/blog/
My Points: 94 / 100