Overkill (Motörhead song)

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Overkill (song).jpg
Single by Motörhead
from the album Overkill
B-side "Too Late Too Late"
Released 10 March 1979
Format 7"
Recorded Dec 1978 – Jan 1979
Roundhouse Studios
Sound Development Studios
Genre Heavy metal, speed metal, hard rock
Length 5:12
Label Bronze Records/EMI
Songwriter(s) Eddie Clarke
Ian Kilmister
Phil Taylor
Producer(s) Jimmy Miller
Motörhead singles chronology
"Louie Louie"
"No Class"
"Louie Louie"
"No Class"

"Overkill" is a song by the British hard rock band Motörhead. It was released in 7" and 12" vinyl pressings in 1979. It is backed with B-side "Too Late Too Late" which appears on the CD re-issues of the Overkill album. Early copies came with a free "Overkill" badge. The single reached number 39 on the UK Singles Chart.

On 9 March 1979 the band played this song on the BBC TV show Top of the Pops to support the release of the single.[1] The song was a live favourite and was frequently featured at Motörhead concerts, often in an extended version.

The artwork on the sleeve was created by Joe Petagno, based on his design for the album's cover.

The song is featured as a track in the video game SSX on Tour, and was re-recorded by Motörhead to be a playable track in the rhythm game Guitar Hero World Tour.

"Overkill" was the final song Motörhead would ever play live.

The track is notable for Phil "Philthy Animal" Taylor's use of two bass drums.



Song by Metallica
from the album Garage Inc.
Released 24 November 1998
Recorded May 1995 – February 1996
Genre Heavy metal, speed metal
Length 4:04
Label Elektra
Songwriter(s) Eddie Clarke
Lemmy Kilmister
Phil Taylor
Producer(s) Bob Rock
James Hetfield
Lars Ulrich
Garage Inc. track listing
"Killing Time"
"Damage Case"
Metallica singles chronology
Ain't My Bitch
(1996) Ain't My Bitch1996
"Hero of the Day"
(1996) String Module Error: Match not found1996
Mama Said
(1996) Mama Said1996
Overkill chronology
(1999) Necroshine1999
(1999) Coverkill1999
(2000) Bloodletting2000

In 1995, during the recording of the album Load, "Overkill", "Damage Case", "Stone Dead Forever" and "Too Late Too Late" were covered by Metallica, as a birthday gift for Lemmy, and released in 1996 on their "Hero of the Day" single. The single was released as a two-CD single; "Overkill" is the second track on the first CD single, and was also used on the second disc of their 1998 cover album Garage Inc.. The single reached No. 60 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and No. 1 on the Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks, and No. 17 on the UK Singles Chart. Some of the songs were played live on a brief tour along with other tracks from Garage Inc. in 1998 which concluded at the Roseland Ballroom in New York City. The songs would finally be played again during the 2009 World Magnetic Tour.

The song was covered by Overkill, who took their name from the Overkill album by Motörhead, and appears as the first track on their 1999 album Coverkill.[2]

In 2008, German heavy metal band Grave Digger included a cover version of the song on their EP Pray.

On 14 September 2011, members of Metallica, Slayer, Megadeth, and Anthrax, collectively known as "the big four" of thrash metal, covered the song live at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx.[3]


  1. ^ Burridge, Alan Illustrated Collector's Guide to Motörhead Published: 1995, Collector's Guide Publishing ISBN 0-9695736-2-6.
  2. ^ "Song: Overkill". Second Hand Songs sub-entry. Retrieved 26 June 2007. 
  3. ^ "Song: METALLICA, MEGADETH, ANTHRAX, SLAYER Perform 'Overkill' At 'Big Four' Show In NYC (Video)". Retrieved 15 September 2011. 

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