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Under the Influence

32 customer reviews

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Audio CD, October 25, 1990
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Under the Influence + Years of Decay + Horrorscope
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 25, 1990)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Megaforce / Wea
  • ASIN: B000002IMK
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #49,928 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Obiturized on February 12, 2006
Format: Audio CD
Production isn't everything, and this album proves it, people seem to complain about the production alot...why. I've heard MUCH worse production than this, the production isn't THAT bad!, sometimes good production can ruin an album, if the production is overdone.

Anyways, onto the album, this is Overkills 3rd offering, after surprising everyone with their stellar debate "Feel The Fire", then the best CD they've ever done came second "Taking Over", could they top that? In my opinion, no, but is this and the following 2 albums great? Indeed!, the song writing is a bit different than the previous 2, but still Thrash.

Bobby Blitz must've smoked alot of cigarettes after "Taking Over", because this is where his rasp begins, still uses the melodic kind of vocals though, like on the previous 2, but in spots, he gets really raspy, and would continue this more on the next 2 releases, great vocalist!

Bobby Gustafson is truely a shredder, great riffs, heavy, fast most the time, and catchy as all hell, great solos, an underrated guitarist.

D.D Verni is a great bassist, great bass lines, just listen to the bass solo in "Never Say Never" excellent!

This is the first album containing Sid Flack, who replaces Rat Skates, and the change is obvious, Sid is great though, alot of nice fills and stuff, his work would show better on the next album "The Years of Decay" though.

"Shred" A very strong opener, great opening riff, great riffs all throughout, very catchy too, SHRED!

"Never Say Never" Starts out a bit slower, then moves into a nice mid paced riff, then another nice riff, then comes the great bass solo by D.D!
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Patrick Stott on July 10, 2002
Format: Audio CD
While Overkill were late starters on the thrash scene, they more than made up for it by being one of the most prolific bands of the late '80s. Under The Influence was their third album in two years when it was released in 1988, and the rapidity at which the albums had been released had no effect on the quality of the material whatsoever.
So what were Overkill serving up for the Wrecking Crew? Well, it was a good dose of solid riffing, bass with attitude, some of the most imaginative drumming to be heard in the entire scene, and perhaps the second best thrash vocalist in Bobby "Blitz" Ellsworth, bettered only by Joey Belladonna.
Bobby Gustafson proved himself one of the most versatile guitar players of the time, multitracking crushing rhythm and searing lead guitars on the same songs. To make up for the lack of a second guitar, DD Verni's bass is high in the mix, sacrificing a bit of bottom end to fill the mid range gaps. The two blended together incredibly well to produce a distinct sound which set Overkill apart from the crowd.
The shout-along of "Hello From The Gutter", while a little cheesy now, was a typical Overkill thrasher- a catchy main riff, backed by the rock solid rhythm section, topped with Ellsworth's distinctive voice and some tasty leads.
No one ever did this band any favours as they fought their way up from the gutters (Hello!), which is reflected in some of the dark lyrical themes running through their songs. Broken dreams, the depths of drunken despair, the end of the line, all may have seemed lost, but there was definitely hope there for Overkill. "Shred", "Never Say Never" and "Headfirst" had more positive themes coming through, like new beginnings and pride in being yourself.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By John Henry Holliday on October 26, 2001
Format: Audio CD
Now, anyone who is a fan of heavy music should know these guys. I also believe in my heart,that even though no one says it, almost every heavy band is inspired by these guys. Big or small inspiration. This album was good. It didnt flow like it should have. But, if you listen to it, you will realize the diversity of it. And i will say this and stand by it. To this day!! No one can make music like these guys. No one arranges music any better!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By General Zombie on December 27, 2004
Format: Audio CD
This is a very sold thrash album right here, though it really doesn't suggest the sort of excellence they'd achieve with their next two albums. Still, it's worth a look for any thrash fan.

'Under the Influence's biggest problem is that they haven't fully developed their thrash style just yet. Blitz has still got his distinctive voice, but he can't control it as well as he could by just the very next album. Furthermore, their riffing is a bit too middle of the road, not enough crushing, doom riffs like they'd pull out on later work, or faster, fiercer work either. The riffs are effective enough, but not always all that distinctive or exciting. Still, this is good stuff, although I'd dare say that there isn't a single flat out great song on the album.

'Shred' is a very good opener. It's a little slow in the verses and chorus, but they're both very melodic and memorable, and serve as a great contrast for the blistering middle break. The solo is totally sweet too, as is pretty much all the leadwork on the album. 'Hello from the Gutter' is pretty bouncy and happy sounding for a thrash song, but it's quite catchy and still pretty heavy despite the lighter tone. 'Drunken Wisdom' is a slower more epic piece. Not as crushing as 'Horroscope' or 'Skullkrusher' but it's still pretty powerful, and it comes to a great climax with the chanting 'Drunken! Wisdom! Drunken! Wisdom!'. 'End of the Line' is perhaps the standout track. The main portions of the song are solid, if not truly spectacular, but the middle break is pretty devastating. The soloing is flatly awesome, and the melodic and memorable but still very thrashy riffing underneath matchs is perfectly.
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