Like a loud bang that stuns you when you’re most vulnerable, the new Anthrax album is not so much a breath of fresh air but rather something that ambushes you with a wall of unexpected energy and crunch, something wholly different from a band floating around mediocrity.
Joey Belladonna returns for his first album with the band in 11 years and delivers one of the stand-out performances of the year; one of the most fun and down right fist pumping thrillers you could hope to hear.
…Worship Music stands up as something more mature, darker and well polished.
While the classic Anthrax sound will continue to live through their most successful outings Among the Living and Spreading the Disease, Worship Music stands up against those as something more mature, darker and well polished. Maybe not as thrashy and certainly lacking in that overall aggressive nature that were so common in mid-eighties thrash metal classics, the new album incorporates far more straight-edged grooves, a likeness perhaps to Metallica’s Black Album, while hinting at their roots through the album opener ‘Earth on Hell’.
Rarely do your senses get peaked by a song so far removed from what you’ve come to expect that it gets replayed even before you hear the next track. ‘I’m Alive’ offers that sense of thrill, laden with catchy hooks and great guitar work from Scott Ian. You’re not given a chance to come down from the high of the previous track before ‘In The End’ thunders in and gets you believing that this is one of those moments that define classic albums and a band’s finest work.
…Anthrax have possibly, unknowingly, created their masterpiece…
It’s hard to pinpoint the real standout performer on the album; everyone pulls their weight and delivers with copious amounts of force and energy. A mainstay in anyone’s CD player long after its release, Anthrax have possibly, unknowingly, created their masterpiece for which all their previous classics should be compared.
No longer will I ever allow the debate of Joey Belladonna vs. John Bush to come up, this album solidifies why Joey should be the voice of Anthrax. A mixture of chugging riffs, wonderfully crafted hooks and Scott Ian’s signature sound that remind you you’re listening to one of the late eighties premier American thrash bands.
Images courtesy of Anthrax