Album info
ReleaseMarch 24, 1979
RecordedDecember 1978 - January 1979 at Roundhouse Studios and Sound Development Studios
GenreHeavy metal, speed metal
Length35:15 (Original) (1979)
51:11 (Reissue) (1996)
LabelBronze (UK) (1979)
Mercury (Canada) (1979)
CMC International (1996)
Sanctuary (2005)
ProducerJimmy Miller, Neil Richmond

Overkill is the second album released by Motörhead, in 1979, and their first for Bronze Records. It peaked at number 24 on the UK charts.

Bronze Records signed the band in 1978 and gave them time in Wessex Studios in London to record Richard Berry's "Louie Louie" and a new song by the band, "Tear Ya Down". The band toured to promote their single "Louie Louie" while Chiswick released the Motörhead album in white vinyl, to keep the momentum going. Sales of the single brought the band their first appearance on BBC Television's Top of the Pops, which gave Bronze the confidence to get the band back into the studio to record a second album.[1]

The first release from those sessions was the single release of "Overkill" backed with "Too Late, Too Late" in 7" and 12" pressings. The Chiswick album "Motörhead" had been a hasty affair as was its production, although it had a sub-bootleg quality which may be appealing, Overkill had more spring and bounce, and a thundering title track that would become a show-stopper for years to come. Three weeks after the initial release of the album in black vinyl, the album was released in a limited edition of 15,000 in green vinyl.[1]

In June 1979 "No Class" was lifted from the album as a follow-up single, backed with a previously unreleased song, "Like a Nightmare". With a view to increasing the sales, the single was released in three different covers, one each of Lemmy, Clarke and Taylor.[2]

The album was reissued on Cassette, CD and vinyl by Castle Communications in 1988, coupled with Another Perfect Day, Bronze having issued a cassette of the album covered with Bomber in 1980.[3]

Sleeve artworkEdit

Joe Petagno, the sleeve artist, had this to say about the cover of the album, which he felt rushed into because the band could not find him:

I had about a week and a half to get it finished... But it was always a disappointment for me, personally. It should have been multi-layered. It was supposed to have a feeling that there was more to it, there were going to be more bits and pieces. In a way, I kind of did it on the Inferno thing. I sort of took my revenge on the new trinity. In a way.[4]

Track listingEdit

All tracks composed by Lemmy Kilmister, Phil Taylor, Eddie Clarke except where noted

Original VersionEdit

  1. "Overkill" – 5:12
  2. "Stay Clean" – 2:40
  3. "(I Won't) Pay Your Price" – 2:56
  4. "I'll Be Your Sister" – 2:51
  5. "Capricorn" – 4:06
  6. "No Class" – 2:39
  7. "Damage Case" (Clarke, Kilmister, Taylor, Mick Farren) – 2:59
  8. "Tear Ya Down" – 2:39
  9. "Metropolis" – 3:34
  10. "Limb from Limb" – 4:54
    The CD re-issues have added tracks;
  11. "Too Late, Too Late" [B-side of Overkill] - 3:25
  12. "Like a Nightmare" [B-side of No Class] - 4:13
  13. "Louie Louie" [Single] (Richard Berry) - 2:47
  14. "Tear Ya Down" [Instrumental Version] - 2:39
  15. "Louie Louie" [Alternative Version] (Berry) - 2:52

Deluxe EditionEdit

Disc 1Edit

  1. "Overkill" – 5:12
  2. "Stay Clean" – 2:40
  3. "(I Won't) Pay Your Price" – 2:56
  4. "I'll Be Your Sister" – 2:51
  5. "Capricorn" – 4:06
  6. "No Class" – 2:39
  7. "Damage Case" (Clarke, Kilmister, Taylor, Farren) – 2:59
  8. "Tear Ya Down" – 2:39
  9. "Metropolis" – 3:34
  10. "Limb from Limb" – 4:54

Disc 2Edit

  1. "Louie Louie" (Richard Berry) - 2:47
  2. "Louie Louie" [Alternative Version] (Berry) - 2:52
  3. "Louie Louie" [Alternative Version 2] (Berry) - 2:45
  4. "Tear Ya Down" - 2:41
  5. "Tear Ya Down" [Alternative Version] - 2:41
  6. "Tear Ya Down" [Instrumental Version] - 2:39
  7. "Too Late, Too Late" - 3:25
  8. "Like a Nightmare" - 4:13
  9. "Like a Nightmare" [Alternative Version] - 4:27
  10. "Louie Louie" [BBC John Peel Session '78] (Berry) - 2:46
  11. "I'll Be Your Sister" [BBC John Peel Session '78] - 3:15
  12. "Tear Ya Down" [BBC John Peel Session '78] - 2:39
  13. "Stay Clean" [BBC Radio 1 In-Concert] - 3:03
  14. "No Class" [BBC Radio 1 In-Concert] - 2:43
  15. "I'll Be Your Sister" [BBC Radio 1 In-Concert] - 3:35
  16. "Too Late, Too Late" [BBC Radio 1 In-Concert] - 3:24
  17. "(I Won't) Pay Your Price [BBC Radio 1 In-Concert]" - 3:19
  18. "Capricorn" [BBC Radio 1 In-Concert] - 4:14
  19. "Limb from Limb" [BBC Radio 1 In-Concert] - 5:26


  • Joe Petagno – sleeve artwork
  • Recorded December, 1978 – January, 1979 at Roundhouse Studios and Sound Development Studios, UK – except "Tear Ya Down" originally recorded at Wessex Studios
  • Produced by Jimmy Miller – except "Tear Ya Down", produced by Neil Richmond, remixed at Roundhouse Studios by Jimmy Miller
  • Engineered by Ashley Howe and Trevor Hallesy


  1. 1.0 1.1 Burridge, Alan (April 1991). "Motörhead". Record Collector (140): 18. 
  2. Burridge, Alan Illustrated Collector's Guide to Motörhead Published: 1995, Collector's Guide Publishing ISBN 0-9695736-2-6.
  3. Bastards strona o Motörhead. Polish Motörhead fan site detailing Overkill's releases. Retrieved on 2007-03-08.
  4. About Joe Petagno - interview section with Joe Petagno, bonus DVD with Inferno 30th Anniversary edition SPV69748.

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