"The Years of Decay" is considered Overkill's breakthrough album, It featured one of the bands best known songs "Elimination", which had a popular music video. Many fans and critics consider this to be one of their best albums. "The Years of Decay" is the fourth studio album by thrash metal band Overkill. It was released in 1989 on the Megaforce label, with distribution handled by Atlantic Records.
Megaforce Worldwide - 782 045-1, Atlantic – 782 045-1
Record Format: 12" Vinyl Stereo Gramophone Record
Total Album (Cover+Record) weight: 230 gram
1989 European Release
Overkill - Producer
Terry Date - Producer
Terry Date is an American Music producer and sound recording engineer, specializing in the rock genres, specially heavy metal. He is well known for his work with Overkill , Metal Church , Slipknot, Pantera, Soulfly, White Zombie, Deftones, Dark Angel , Dream Theater, Slayer , Soundgarden and Limp Bizkit.
He was born on 10 November 1954, and grew up in the Pacific Northwest. Date began his musical career in the 1970s as a recording engineer, working on albums by a number of well-known artists in the rock and heavy metal scenes.
He is known for his distinctive production style, which combines powerful, heavy guitar sounds with dynamic, punchy drums and clear, clean vocals. Date has been recognized as an influential figure in the heavy metal and hard rock communities, and his work has been widely praised for its impact on the sound of modern metal music.
Jon and Marsha Zazula - Executive Producers
Jon Zazula Jon Zazula, also known as Jonny Z, is a legendary figure in the heavy metal music scene. He is best known for discovering and promoting some of the biggest heavy metal bands of the 80s, including Metallica, Anthrax, and Megadeth. Born in 1951, Jon Zazula grew up in the Bronx, New York and was a passionate music fan from an early age. He was particularly drawn to heavy metal, a genre that was still in its infancy at the time, and he became one of its biggest supporters and advocates.
Zazula started his music career as a record store owner, running a small record store called Rock 'n' Roll Heaven in the Bronx. It was here that he first discovered Metallica, then a relatively unknown band. Impressed by their raw talent and energy, Zazula offered to become their manager and help them secure a record deal. He was instrumental in getting them signed to a record label and launching their career.
In 1983, Zazula founded Megaforce Records, which became one of the most influential heavy metal labels of the 80s. The label helped popularize heavy metal and thrash metal, a sub-genre of heavy metal characterized by its fast and aggressive style. Under Zazula's guidance, Megaforce Records released some of the most influential heavy metal albums of all time, including Metallica's "Kill 'Em All," Anthrax's "Fistful of Metal," and Megadeth's "Killing Is My Business... And Business Is Good!"
In addition to his work with Megaforce Records, Zazula was also known for his passion and dedication to heavy metal music. He was a tireless promoter of the genre, organizing concerts and tours, and working to get heavy metal music heard by a wider audience. He was always on the lookout for new talent, and he discovered and signed many other important heavy metal bands over the years, including Mercyful Fate, Testament, and Exodus.
Despite his many accomplishments, Jon Zazula remains a humble and down-to-earth individual. He is still involved in the music industry today and continues to support new heavy metal bands. He is widely respected and admired by fans of the genre for his contributions to the heavy metal music scene, and for his unwavering support of the genre and its artists.
Marsha Zazula widely known as a pioneering executive producer in the music industry, played a significant role in shaping the landscape of heavy metal music. Alongside her husband Jon Zazula, she co-founded and owned Megaforce Records, a renowned record label that served as a launching pad for numerous influential bands. Marsha's tireless dedication to supporting emerging talent and her unwavering commitment to the artists she worked with established her as an influential figure in the music business.
Born and raised in the United States, Marsha developed a deep passion for music from an early age. She possessed an innate ability to recognize exceptional talent and had an unwavering belief in the power of heavy metal as a genre. In 1982, Marsha and Jon founded Megaforce Records in New Jersey, creating a platform to promote and distribute the music they loved.
Marsha's role at Megaforce Records involved overseeing the production of albums for an impressive roster of bands. Throughout the 1980s, she produced over two dozen albums for notable acts such as Hades, Overkill, Raven, and Anthrax. Her work as a producer not only showcased her impeccable musical taste but also her ability to nurture artists and bring out their best performances.
Under Marsha's guidance, Megaforce Records became synonymous with the burgeoning thrash metal movement of the 1980s. The label's roster boasted a diverse range of influential bands that pushed the boundaries of heavy metal music. Marsha's keen ear for talent and her dedication to ensuring the artists' artistic vision were preserved made Megaforce Records a sought-after destination for aspiring metal bands.
Marsha's influence extended beyond the studio. She actively worked to secure recording contracts, negotiate deals, and promote the artists she believed in. Her relentless efforts to get the music heard by wider audiences resulted in several breakthrough moments for the bands she worked with.
Beyond her work with Megaforce Records, Marsha also played a pivotal role in organizing and promoting live events. She recognized the importance of live performances as a means for bands to connect with their fans and build a devoted following. Through her efforts, Marsha helped facilitate countless memorable concerts and tours, solidifying Megaforce Records' reputation as a force to be reckoned with in the heavy metal scene.
Marsha Zazula's contributions to the music industry have left an indelible mark on the world of heavy metal. Her passion, vision, and unwavering support for artists have been instrumental in shaping the careers of numerous bands and influencing the genre as a whole. Her work with Megaforce Records helped pave the way for the success of countless metal acts, leaving a lasting legacy that continues to resonate with fans and musicians to this day.
Terry Date - Sound Engineer
Matt Lane - Sound Engineer
Matt Lane has been producer or engineer for records of: Overkill, Fates Warning, Liege Lord, Evoken.
The "Years of Decay" was ecorded at: Carriage House Studios, Stamford, CT, June/July 1989
Mastered at: Masterdisk, NYC by Howie Weinberg
Howie Weinberg is a highly renowned and respected mastering engineer in the music industry. With a career spanning over four decades, he has played an instrumental role in shaping the sound and quality of numerous iconic albums. Born on 14 September 14, 1953, in New York City, Howie's passion for music began at a young age.
In the early 1970s, Weinberg embarked on his journey into the music industry, starting as an assistant engineer at Masterdisk, a leading mastering studio in New York City. Under the guidance of accomplished engineers like Bob Ludwig and Greg Calbi, Howie honed his skills and gained invaluable experience working with a diverse range of artists and genres.
Throughout the 1980s, Weinberg emerged as a prominent figure in the industry, known for his meticulous attention to detail and innovative approach to mastering. His ability to enhance the sonic qualities of recordings and optimize their playback on various formats made him highly sought after by both established and emerging artists.
One of the pivotal moments in Howie Weinberg's career came when he collaborated with renowned producer Rick Rubin on the Beastie Boys' groundbreaking album "Licensed to Ill" in 1986. The success of the album further solidified Howie's reputation as an exceptional mastering engineer. This led to a fruitful partnership with Rubin, and they worked together on a string of influential albums, including releases by Slayer, Public Enemy, and Johnny Cash.
Weinberg's remarkable talent for mastering became evident in his ability to capture the essence of an artist's vision while adding his expertise to create a polished and dynamic final product. His work on Nirvana's iconic album "Nevermind" in 1991 is a testament to his ability to bring out the best in a recording, with his mastering contributing to the album's raw energy and sonic impact.
Over the years, Howie Weinberg has collaborated with a wide array of artists and bands from various genres, including U2, The White Stripes, Smashing Pumpkins, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and many others. His discography boasts an extensive list of critically acclaimed and commercially successful albums, solidifying his position as one of the most influential mastering engineers of his time.
In 1995, Howie Weinberg opened his own mastering studio, Howie Weinberg Mastering, in Los Angeles. Equipped with state-of-the-art technology and a deep understanding of the mastering process, the studio became a go-to destination for artists seeking the highest level of audio quality for their projects.
Throughout his career, Weinberg has been recognized with numerous accolades, including several Grammy nominations and wins for his exceptional contributions to the music industry. He is highly respected by his peers and has been a mentor to many aspiring mastering engineers, passing on his knowledge and expertise to the next generation.
Howie Weinberg's unwavering dedication to his craft and his ability to elevate the sonic experience of countless albums have solidified his position as a true master of his art. His meticulous attention to detail, technical expertise, and passion for music continue to shape the industry and inspire generations of mastering engineers to strive for excellence.
Fastner & Larson - Album Artwork
Michael Paras - Photographer
Michael Paras (Photographer) for the Overkill albums: Years of Decay and Horrorscope
Bobby "Blitz" Ellsworth (realname: Robert Joseph Ellsworth) Lead singer with the American Thrash Metal band Overkill since 1980
Bobby Gustafson (real-name Robert Wayne Gustafson) - Guitar, timeline: 1980-1982 The DropOuts 1982-1990 Overkill
D.D. Verni (real-name Carlo Verni) lead singer with Overkill since 1980. Previously (1979-1980) he was in a band called "The Lubricunts" together with "Rat Skates".
Sid Falck (real-name: Robert Falck) - Drums, played drums in the band "Battlezone" in 1986, before joining "Overkill" in 1987. He left "Overkill" in 1992.
OVERKILL is an American heavy metal band that was formed in 1980 in New Jersey. The band is considered one of the pioneers of the thrash metal genre and has been influential in shaping the sound of heavy metal in the 1980s and beyond.
OVERKILL was formed by guitarist Bobby "Blitz" Ellsworth and bassist D.D. Verni, who were high school friends. The band's early lineup also included drummer Rat Skates and guitarist Dan Spitz, who later left to join Anthrax. The band's first album, "Feel the Fire," was released in 1985 and received positive reviews from critics. This was followed by a string of successful albums, including "Taking Over" (1987), "Under the Influence" (1988), and "The Years of Decay" (1989).
During the 1990s, the band's popularity declined due to the rise of grunge and alternative rock. However, the band continued to release albums and tour. In 2010, the band celebrated its 30th anniversary and released the album "Ironbound," which was well-received by both fans and critics.
Music and lyrical themes
OVERKILL's music is characterized by fast and aggressive guitar riffs, pounding drums, and Bobby "Blitz" Ellsworth's distinctive vocals. The band's early sound was heavily influenced by the New Wave of British Heavy Metal, but they later developed their own style that incorporated elements of punk and thrash.
The band's lyrics often deal with social and political issues, as well as personal struggles and the darker side of human nature. Some of the band's most notable songs include "Elimination," "Hello from the Gutter," and "Horrorscope."
Impact on the heavy metal scene
OVERKILL has had a significant impact on the heavy metal scene, particularly in the thrash metal genre. The band's fast and aggressive style has influenced many other bands in the genre, including Metallica, Slayer, and Megadeth. In addition, the band's uncompromising attitude and dedication to their music has inspired many fans and musicians alike.