Sound of White Noise
Fistful of Metal, Megaforce, 1984.
Anthrax were influential for the emergence of speed and thrash metal. Combining the speed and fury of hardcore punk with the prominent guitars and vocals of heavy metal, they helped create a new subgenre of heavy metal on their early albums and they were likening to bands such as Metallica and Megadeth. Original guitarists Scott Ian and Dan Spitz were a formidable pair, spitting out lightning-fast riffs and solos that shook the music industry.
Unlike Metallica or Megadeth, they had the good sense to temper their often serious music with a healthy dose of humor and realism. After their first album, ‘Fistful of Metal’, singer Joey Belladonna and bassist Frank Bello joined the lineup. Belladonna helped take the band farther away from conventional metal, and over the next five albums, Anthrax arguably became the leaders of speed metal.
As the '80s became the '90s, they also began to increase their experiments with hip-hop, culminating in a tour with Public Enemy in 1991 and a joint re-recording of PE's classic ‘Bring the Noise.’ After their peak period of the late '80s, Anthrax kicked Belladonna out of the band in 1992 and replaced him with ex-Armored Saint vocalist John Bush -- a singer that was gruffer and deeper, fitting most metal conventions perfectly. Subsequently, their sound became less unique and their audience shrank slightly as a consequence, and after signing to Elektra for 1993's ‘Sound of White Noise’, the group left the label after just one more album, 1995's ‘Stomp 442’.
At this point, Anthrax, now a four-piece consisting of Ian, Bush, Bello, and drummer Charlie Benante, built their own studio in Yonkers, NY, and after a three-year hiatus returned with their Ignition label debut ‘The Threat Is Real, Vol. 8’.
1999 saw the release of Anthrax's very first "hits" collection, titled ‘Return of the Killer A's: The Best Of’, also their first release for the Beyond label. The album included a cover of "Ball of Confusion," which featured a duet between current frontman Bush and former vocalist Belladonna. A proposed tour that was to include both vocalists was announced, but on the eve of its launch, Belladonna pulled out, reportedly for monetary reasons. The tour carried on as Anthrax signed on to participate in a package tour during the summer of 2000 with Mötley Crüe and Megadeth, but left the tour after only playing a handful of dates.
Anthrax appeared on the Twisted Sister tribute album Twisted Forever in 2001 and began recording their next album the same year. In addition, guitarist Ian found time to regularly host the metal television program Rock Show on VH1, plus he appeared as part of the fictional metal band Titannica in the film Run, Ronnie, Run. VH1 programming heads eventually replaced Ian with Sebastian Bach, but the band was ready to head back into the studio anyway.
New guitarist Rob Caggiano joined in the spring of 2002, just in time for the recording. A year later, Anthrax made their Sanctuary debut with 'We've Come for You All'. The band's dynamic hadn't changed, and touring in support of that album was met with overwhelming success. The CD/DVD set 'Music of Mass Destruction: Live in Chicago', which arrived in spring 2004, celebrated Anthrax's two decades in the business. Then, in 2005, Anthrax's entire original lineup of Ian, Spitz, Belladonna, Benante, and Bello reunited for a tour and the CD/DVD retrospective 'Anthrology: No Hit Wonders [1985-1991]'. Anthrax also issued 'Alive 2', recorded during their summer 2005 reuninon tour.
For The Record:
Members include Frank Bello (born July 9, 1965; replaced Dan Lilker, 1984), bass; Charlie Benante (replaced Greg D'Angelo, early 1980s), drums; John Bush (replaced Joey Belladonna [born October 30, in Oswego, NY; replaced Neil Turbin, 1984], 1992), vocals; Scott Ian (born Scott Ian Rosenfeld), guitar; and Dan Spitz (replaced Greg Walls, early 1980s), guitar.
Band formed in New York, NY, 1981; signed with Megaforce Records, 1983, and released debut album, Fistful of Metal, 1984; signed with Island Records, and released Spreading the Disease, 1986; signed with Elektra Entertainment, 1992, and released Sound of White Noise, 1993.
Awards: Sound of White Noise named best metal album in Guitar Player's Readers Poll, 1994.
Addresses: Record company—Elektra Entertainment, 345 North Maple Dr., Ste. 123, Beverly Hills, CA 90210.
Euphoria included "Make Me Laugh," a tirade against television evangelism; a cover of the French rock band Trust's "Antisocial"; "Now It's Dark," inspired by the David Lynch film Blue Velvet; and "Misery Loves Company," penned in response to the Stephen King novel Misery.
Aside from the pantheon of popular culture, the band focused on social and political upheaval, while still managing to maintain the comic appeal they had begun to develop earlier. Ian outlined his personal agenda for social renewal to Melody Maker, venturing, "I think there should be a limited number of zombies in circulation, so that people could give vent to their frustrations by beating them up with bats. I think that could be socially useful."
In an effort to prevent exhaustion and their own frustrations, Anthrax took a three-month vacation from recording, touring, and each other to regain their creative energies—the first in three years. Then, just as they began their next project, a major setback hit the band: in January of 1990, Anthrax narrowly escaped injury in a serious fire at their studio. The bandmembers formed a human chain to try to save their equipment, but the conflagration ultimately caused more than $100,000 worth of damage to Anthrax's gear and destroyed the entire studio.
Source: Sonya Shelton
This information is provided as a brief overview and not as a definitive guide, there are other sources on the net for that. If however you have a story or information that is not generally known we would love to hear from you. Content@rokpool.com