Jo Schüftan of Horns Up Rocks! conducted an interview with ANTHRAX singer Joey Belladonna at the August 5 stop of the Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival in Hartford, Connecticut. You can now watch the chat below.
SHADOWS FALL drummer Jason Bittner filled in for ANTHRAX‘s Charlie Benante on this summer’s entire Mayhem run while Charlie was recovering from a minor hand injury.
Asked how it felt to be playing so many shows without Benante, Belladonna said, “It’s always different when you’ve got somebody in there that’s not in the band. [But] Jason‘s doing a great job. We can’t say enough about how we’ve gotten along as far as getting the set down; he knows the songs. I haven’t seen anything that’s been troubling. No one’s really had any complaints… that kind of stuff. We wouldn’t offer [the gig to] someone that might not be able to do the job. Yeah, it’s fine. But we miss Charlie and we wish he was around.”
Regarding whether fans can expect to see Benante back behind the kit for ANTHRAX anytime soon, Joey said, “I don’t know. I’m not sure. I haven’t really had any contact with him that much. I know he’s healing and all that stuff. So I’m sure he’ll figure it out one way or the other. And [in the meantime], we’ll just go business as usual.”
ANTHRAX recently spent time in the studio recording several cover versions of some of their favorite rock classics, to be included with the upcoming re-release of the band’s latest album, “Worship Music”. The band’s guitarist, Scott Ian, said in a recent interview with Artisan News, “The drums are done and some of the guitars are done, but we’re trying to finish off these last two songs — ‘Smokin” from BOSTON and ‘Anthem’ from RUSH.”
In addition to the RUSH and BOSTON covers, ANTHRAX is also recording its versions of AC/DC‘s “T.N.T.”, JOURNEY‘s “Keep On Runnin'” and BLACK SABBATH‘s “Neon Knights”. The latter song is expected to appear on the upcoming Ronnie James Dio tribute album which is being assembled by the singer’s widow and longtime manager Wendy Dio.