OVERKILL’S BOBBY ELLSWORTH: ‘500 GOOD HEARTS > 10,000 CUNTZ’
Between-song stage banter reminds me of confronting a dentist’s drill, and I prepare for each similarly: When I know it’s coming, I wince, recoil, and repress a series of violent shudders. Cuz suffering either is just so goddamn painful. Some cats are all intense and bro-brah, just heaping on overly-earnest thanks and generally acting like they’re buttering you up for a loan. Then you have the drill sergeant types, who demand that paying ticketholders jump or say ho or make “a crazy fuckin’ circle pit” or some sort of audience participation that would happen organically for, y’know, a good act. Shut it.
Now, granted, it’s not easy to be personable from the stage (I’m told that a band sometimes feels downright hated up there) or coherent (wit might be impossible after the year’s 280th show) and shit, merch sales represent a real priority for bands, so on my part there’s no hostility toward inept crowd-strokers. As with the dentist, I appreciate the effort. But it’s in this context that I worship Overkill frontman Bobby “Blitz” Ellsworth, champion of hilarious, empowering crowd interaction (above). Like a skilled salesman, Blitz makes you feel appreciated (not worked) for your purchase and exudes confidence in his product. Which makes sense both because Overkill consistently rules (you’ve cranked 2010’s sleeper classic Ironbound, right?) and shit I think he actually is a salesman. Of delicious chocolates no less. Hmm. I’ve got it! As soon as my development deal with A&E goes through, I’m pitching Blitz to follow the exterminator guy on Tuesdays: Thrash Metal Chocolatier.
The first two songs of Overkill’s Ironbound kinda have the same chorus but won’t stop the album from landing on all credible year-end best album lists. Get it then see Overkill on tour now!