Reviewed: March 2012
Released: 2012, Heaven and Hell Records
Reviewer: Robert Williams
OVERLORDE SR (Not to be confused with the \”Return Of The Snow Giant\” Overlorde) was formed in Fayetteville, North Carolina in the late seventies. In 1985 the band released the four song \”Medieval Metal\” demo and; according to their bio, shifted an impressive 10,000 units. Also of note would be Overlorde SR\’s appearance on the eighth installment of the \”Metal Massacre\” compilation released through Metal Blade Records. Heaven and Hell Records has dusted off this forgotten gem and released the demo as \”Medieval Metal Too\” alongside some other additional rarities and bonus tracks.
\”Full Speed Ahead\” opens Medieval Metal Too\” with an excellent example of some early speed metal awesomeness. Vocalist Steve V. Sosa Jr. has a powerful mid-range delivery and is backed by a driving rhythm section and some tasteful dual guitar harmonies and soloing. \”Keeper Of The Flame\” (The original demo recording) is next and is a charging, galloping number with a catchy, albeit dated, chorus. The band would go on to re-record this track for the aforementioned \”Metal Massacre\” compilation and the re-recording sounds almost identical to that of the original performance wise, with slightly better production. \”Enchantress Of The Night\” is a pounding hard rocking fist pumper with all the lyrical cliches of the early eighties buttrocker scene and awesome dual guitar leads.
As for the bonus tracks, why in Odin\’s name did the band choose to cover \”In The Year 2525\” by the folk duo Zager and Evans is anyone\’s guess. I have always passionately hated that song and though the band do a convincing cover, I still can\’t get behind that song. \”Knights Of The Realm\” on the other hand, kicks all kinds of ass, with some great shredding and another memorable chorus. \”So Be It\” must have been quite a few years later in the game as the band take a heavier approach musically, beefing up the riffs with crunchier tones (I would guess early nineties).
In terms of production, right off the bat I\’d point out that the quality of these recordings are fantastic! As far as the demo recordings are concerned, this material was very well recorded and mixed and the performances are all top notch. As with all Heaven and Hell Records releases, expect an enhanced CD with an mp3 label sampler and interactive content, deluxe liner notes, photos and credits.
I found this to be a really enjoyable listen but I definitely don\’t think it\’s for everyone\’s tastes. Having said that, if you\’re nostalgic and/or early RIOT, The Rods, Pentagram, and Virgin Steele make up your personal playlist you might do well to check this release out.
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