Overcast Are Reborn On Reunion Album; Plus Killswitch Engage, Metallica & More News That Rules, In Metal File

Metallers didn't want to repeat history on LP, but 'we did want it to feel like the same band.'

It’s been two years since influential Massachusetts metallers Overcast announced they’d be reuniting for a single release — a collection of re-recorded tracks culled from the band’s poorly produced back-catalog.

But on Tuesday, after what was a prolonged, yet modest, bidding war (or as close to a bidding war as you can get in metal), Overcast’s reunion LP, Reborn to Kill Again, finally landed in stores. And while the band has a handful of reunion shows booked through August 30 in Waterbury, Connecticut, with Dissolve, the reunion is going to be short-lived — at least for the time being.

With frontman Brian Fair’s first priority being Shadows Fall, the band he joined after Overcast’s 1998 demise, and bassist Mike D’Antonio’s other band, Killswitch Engage, set to start work on their next studio effort in October, Overcast’s reunion can’t carry on forever. But D’Antonio said there’s a chance the band could release new material down the line.

“When we recorded it, we just tried to get the songs sounding as good as they possibly could, and there are two songs we’d never recorded that are on this record,” he said. “We had talked about doing another record, and there’s another record on the table under our contract with Metal Blade. We can do it if we want. If we don’t, whatever. But we have discussed doing another record, and I’m kind of excited about tinkering with ideas for it. That said, if we did start writing a new album, and it wasn’t turning out like an Overcast record, I don’t think we’d put it out. It really needs to have a certain vibe. It can’t be another metalcore record, like the things that are going on these days. It really needs to have that old-school mentality, which we had held true back then. If not, it’s not even worth it.”

Produced by Killswitch guitarist Adam Dutkiewicz and recorded on the band’s own dime, Reborn to Kill Again may sound slightly different to longtime fans. That’s because some of the songs were recorded the way they were originally played or tweaked in the studio to reflect the changes they’ve undergone since they were first recorded.

“We didn’t want to change it too much, and we didn’t want it to sound like a different band,” D’Antonio said. “At the same time, we didn’t want to give [fans] the exact same record, but we did want it to feel like the same band. Some of the stuff was recorded the way we’d played the songs live, because when you’ve played something 100,000 times, you end up tweaking it, changing it slightly. So the new album reflects some of the older songs and how we used to play them live back then.”

After Overcast’s brief run of gigs, it’s back to Killswitch for Mike. He said he’s been writing material for the follow-up to 2006′s As Daylight Dies over the past year, and he’s already submitted a handful of demos for the disc, which the band hopes to have in stores this coming spring. He said a headlining run was also in the works for March.

“I’m one of those dudes who needs to write constantly, because I really suck at writing music with a deadline,” D’Antonio said. “My brain gets fried, and I can’t do anything, I just shut down completely. When we start on this next one, we’ll just bring our demos to practice, and we’ll listen to them, judge them and start rearranging the parts that need to be rearranged — or we just start jamming on what sounds cool.”

So far, he said, the material’s sounding “fast” and everything he’s written for the LP “has at least one blast beat and very fast drumming, with really slow riffs.” Has the bassist ever considered a Shadows Fall/ Killswitch Engage co-headlining run, with Overcast as the opener? “Not at all, but that could be fun,” he said. “It could be really not fun for me, but that’s something to consider.”

The rest of the week’s metal news:

If you’d like to hear Metallica‘s new single, “The Day That Never Comes,” you can head on over to the band’s MySpace page, where it’s been streaming since Thursday morning. The song will appear on the band’s forthcoming album, Death Magnetic, due September 12. …

First, Sid Wilson breaks both his heels. Now, Slipknot drummer Joey Jordison has broken an ankle, forcing the band to cancel its upcoming European touring plans. “Doctors have advised Joey to stay off his leg for four to six weeks, to prevent further injury or permanent and more serious damage,” the band said in a statement. “We know you will be hugely disappointed, and so are we. Canceling shows is never an easy decision, and we apologize to all our fans, friends and family for not being there to throw down with you.” Slipknot’s new album, All Hope Is Gone, hits stores Tuesday. …

Machine Head guitarist Phil Demmel collapsed onstage Sunday during the Bristow, Virginia, stop on this summer’s RockStar Energy Mayhem festival. Demmel was severely dehydrated and, according to a press release, had mentioned several times to his tech that he was feeling lightheaded during the show. He’s said to be doing much better now. “That was a scary moment for all of us,” said drummer Dave McClain. “Seeing your friend collapse like that is something that nobody wants to experience.” Demmel isn’t expected to miss any of the band’s upcoming shows. … Chimaira are hard at work, writing material for their next LP. They have about four songs ready so far and will again be working with producer Jason Suecof (God Forbid, Trivium). The band hopes to begin tracking in October. …

Winds of Plague have parted ways with drummer Jeff Tenney. “Winds of Plague as individuals have been hit very hard recently by a very selfish act committed by our longtime drummer, Jeff Tenney,” the band said in a statement, without providing further details. “We are disgusted and very disappointed in his actions [and are] currently on the search for a new drummer.” …
Napalm Death have christened their upcoming 13th album Time Waits for No Slave, and the record should be in stores before year’s end.