Current world: a State Of Euphoria !!!
1988, the height of the thrashmetal movement: Under The Influence, Frolic Through The Park, Forbidden Evil, Violent Restitution, Dimension Hatröss, The New Order and So Far So Good So What, just to name a few ...and from Queens NY, here comes the mighty ANTHRAX !
In the metal-realm, the THRAXers are credited to a lot of things:
One of the "Big 4" thrashmetal bands of the eighties, along arena-fillers METALLICA, SLAYER and MEGADETH ...and "the one" from the East-Coast.
The first US thrash-band with an actual vocalist, as in: Joey Belladonna, the man with the European falsetto power-metallesque pipes.
They disturbed the metalhead dress-code, as in: Vision Street Wear apparel, Super Hero tshirts, colorful jams shorts and track suits ...a cue from the hiphop/skater scene.
They smiled a lot, as in: they looked genuinely happy and easy-going fellas ...not the typical badass mug-shot metal-grin.
They had something to say, as in: messages about various social-issues as they stayed far, far, far away from the Satan/Hell/Death lyrical content.
They spearheaded the metal-rap fusion, as in: 1987's single "I'm The Man" and again with 91's "Startin' Up A Posse" ...they even covered and toured with PUBLIC ENEMY ...up yours Family Values !
...but let's get back to 1988
While the unwritten rule in thrashmetal was to be the fastest, angriest, sexist, sadist, nationalisst and most evil, ever, NOT! ...ANTHRAX took it upon themselves to play clean thrashmetal, without it's clichés. The album includes killer quality thrash, aggressive-riffing, fast-paced hooks and a lotta fun, all packaged with a perfect production, on every channels. From it's spiral yellow-themed cover, to the hilarious band-photo illustration, State Of Euphoria stands as a unique release in the thrash abundance of the late 80s.
"Be All, End All" is the perfect opener, a smirk to their previous LP's opener "Among The Living", while "Make Me Laugh" takes shots at a current Televangelist scandals, the dark mid-paced "Who Cares Wins" deals with the alarming NYC homeless-issues and "Out Of Sight Out Of Mind" reminds us that the boys are about riffs and more riffs while the final track "Finalé" is one of ANTHRAX's fastest-song ...and of course, the album includes the now famous TRUST-cover in "Antisocial", a number still present in today's setlist !
Yet the musical focus of the album remains drummer Charlie Benante. Just like other 1988-competitors South Of Heaven and And Justice For All ...this is a drum album !
While most fans and critics label 1987's Among The Living as the THRAX's classic-album, their 88 follow-up just doesn't follow-up the riff-mania, but it clearly showcases a full mature band, proving that they are not another fry in the pan, firing on all pistons on this now classic thrashmetal release.
God says go and masturbate !
INTERVIEW in 1988
LIVE in EUROPE in 1988
August 21, 1990 - 2020: 30 years of: Persistence Of Time.
From a colorful state ...to a persistent black.
Record #5 and the stakes are at an all-time high. All the way back in shitty 1983, no-one would've thought thrashmetal would have an audience, no-one would've though thrashmetal would be marketable, no-one would've though thrashmetal could sell past 5-figures. While METALLICA and MEGADETH headbanged their way into the arenas, they, along SLAYER and ANTHRAX, were labeled the Big Four of thrashmetal. But sadly our NYC-boys were always a couple of steps behind the other three, but not for long, has they would leap-frog ahead like no other metal-band has done before, leaving the competition far behind in awe.
The original East-Coast thrashers fought an upward battle, from changing frontmen, to changing labels, to losing their studio in a fire, yet now: it's thrax-time ! After both commercial successes of 1987's mean Among The Living LP and 1988's wide State Of Euphoria LP, a now bigger, bolder and badder ANTHRAX finally had a proper mature production and the crowd was ready for them.
Tic-toc-tic-toc the clock runs down and brings us Armageddon, the time is now. "Time" is a massive piledriver that hammers away into thrashmetal territory. Loud and obnoxious, this is the new and improved RIAA-certified Gold THRAX. The killings continues on "Blood" and the video-cut, the dark "In My World". A chuga-chuga feast that doesn't leave much to the imagination: this is heavy shit !
The speedmetal factor is alive and well on "Gridlock" and the stealth-fighter type, the album's closer "Discharge". Another record - another cover, and this time we get the revamped Joe Jackson pop-punk classic "Got The Time". Another cut to add to the wall, as this piece as since become permanent in the band's live environment.
The Persistence Of Time 1990-92 era is a key turning-point in ANTHRAX's history, as well as in heavymetal's global history.
Metal's biopic was re-written with this massive collaboration, but this time it went 4-ways. The Clash Of The Titans Spring/Summer 1991 US tour staring: ANTHRAX, MEGADETH, SLAYER with openers ALICE IN CHAINS. Three of the four thrashmetal top-players, packaged under one roof for a whopping 20$USD. Pushing the boundaries again, ALICE IN CHAINS a non-thrash band was invited at the last minute to cover for the missing in action DEATH ANGEL. Irony at it's best as mere months later, the same ALICE would become Platinum-sellers, leaders of the grunge-scene and dominate half of the 90s …while most thrash-bands would have a hard time to fill-up local clubs and theaters.
What posse ?
What posse ?
What posse ?
What started with 1987's "I'm The Man" EP was now ready for a full 360° hiphop makeover. 1991's Attack Of The Killer B's CD, history's longest EP ever clocking at 44:17sec, is where the real beat is found on the comical "Startin' Up A Posse" and the adrenalized PUBLIC ENEMY collaboration with both Chuck D and Flavor Flav, in the now iconic "Bring The Noise" reprise.
Bring The Noise, the fuckin' video
The ultimate cross-over, forever unifying the metal-world with the hiphop-scene, ANTHRAX and PUBLIC ENEMY did it. And the party went so well that the unthinkable happened:
The ANTHRAX + PUBLIC ENEMY Autumn 1991 US tour
Persistence Of Time and Attack Of The Killer B's solidified the Yonkers as not only a very creative band, but also forever broke them away from the heavymetal stereotypes. ANTHRAX, breaking the metal status-quo and creating trends, one riff at a time.
This was also a make-over for Scott Ian. Indeed the riff-master shaved his head. It might sound tame today, but back in 1990, sporting the full rock-hairdo was the only way. This new raw fashion was also in style with Rob Halford and Phil Anselmo ...a true sign of the upcoming nineties and reconstruction of hard-music.
Success was warmly welcomed, yet in late-1992, the 5-way classic-lineup marriage was over, as singer Joey Belladonna was let go and replaced with frontmen #3 in John Bush.
...but we ride limos too !
In My World = video
Got The Time = video
Belly Of The Beast = video
Interview in 1990
Live in 1991
Clash Of The Titans documentary in 1991
Reflection on Persistence Of Time
Référence croisée Helter Skelter:
the Big Four
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