Formed in 2008 in Ferrara, Emilia-Romagna, Italian Thrashers Game Over are another act, who along with the likes of Bonded By Blood, Evil Invaders, Toxic Waltz, Merciless Death, and the irritatingly misspelt Fabulous Desaster, wear their influences on their sleeve by choosing a name based on a classic Thrash album or song.
The band’s fourth full-length release in nine years, Claiming Supremacy (Scarlet) is every bit as charmingly and reliably predictable as its predecessors, offering nothing but simple, straightforward, but well aimed ’80s inspired thrash-and-bashery.
After instrumental opener ‘Onward to Blackness’ sets the mood, the first proper track, ‘Two Steps In The Shadows’ launches the record properly with speed, fury, groove, and lashings of gang vocal backing. ‘Last Before The End’ delivers more of the same, and ‘My Private Nightmare’ increases the speed substantially before the band becomes a little more adventurous than usual with six-minute standout track, ‘Blessed Are The Heretics’.
With its mentions of ‘The Upside-Down’, and ‘Demogorgons’, it’s made quite clear that hit TV show Stranger Things is the influence for next track, ‘Eleven’, ‘Broken Trails’ is standard Game Over fare, and ‘Shattered Souls’ is a well-played, but rather unnecessary, second instrumental. The decent but fairly forgettable ‘Lysander’ speeds along quite nicely without really going anywhere, but final cut ‘Show Me What You Got’ will absolutely be guaranteed to peel the skin from faces when played live.
Mixed and mastered by Toxic Holocaust frontman Joel Grind, Claiming Supremacy is arguably Game Over’s best sounding album to date. The guitars of Alessandro “Sanso” Sansone and Luca “Ziro” Zironi are razor-sharp, Anthony “Vender” Dantone drives each song with big beats, rolls, and crashing cymbals, and the bass of frontman Renato “Reno” Chiccoli pulses and throbs along audibly in a lively mix while his raw, rasping vocals sound as good than ever.