“Mother?…What’s wrong with me?”
Surreal Overdose doesn’t flash much of anything we haven’t heard a thousand times before, particularly if you count yourself a long-time fan of Deceased. But what sets this band on an entirely different plane from the rest of their peers is the fact that they do everything that comprises the “it” a hundred times better. So while the thought of hearing yet another sample of poor little Regan might prompt a number of you to reach for the ‘cliché flag’, Deceased manages to use it perfectly by tacking it to the tail-end of a face-peeling ode to a deranged Mother who spends her days birthing an endless chain of bedevilled babies. And really, that’s Deceased in a nutshell: deranged, born in a cellar and with an unquenchable thirst for revulsion…FOR OVER 25 YEARS.
Spending that much time in the kettle might lead some to believe that the Deceased of 2011 might be a few shades softer compared to the miscreants who first plopped to the floor back in 1985. To you I say: Take a long pull off that 3:02 mark in “Cloned (Day of the Robot)”; are you kidding me with that fluttering blitz? That drill to the ear? That Rrröööaaarrr!!! Masterfully done, particularly when the pot is further sweetened with such a savory dose of melodic guitar work. It’s precisely this sort of tune that makes it abundantly clear that this lot has never really fallen off their game for a moment.
And to follow that little slice of hell with something as teutonically thrashing as “Off-Kilter” that wraps the ancient Sodom/Protector/Kreator/Living Death influence so smoothly around the fist that’s about to pulverize your teeth–well, it’s almost unfair to all these young bands waffling about in the thrash genre trying to figure out how to properly get things done.
Really, I think you’d have to travel back pretty far to find another thrash album that manages to gather so much of the greatness of heavy metal over the past quarter-century and deliver it as succinctly as Surreal Overdose. This record is horrific, serious, tongue-in-cheek, thrashy, deathy, savage, fiercely melodic, filthy, pretty and päckëd tö thë blöödy räftërs with ümläütëd äggrëssivënëss. And it closes things out with one of the finest thrash tunes these ears have heard in years with “Dying in Analog,” putting an explicit and inarguable period on the end of one of 2011’s shoe-ins for my top ten list.
If you’ve somehow managed to ignore this band over this lengthy stretch of time for any number of ludicrous reasons, I’d recommend that you stop burning your cash on bullshit caramel frappes and cell-phone bills and give Surreal Overdose your immediate attention. Just a fantastic album.