ANTHRAX’s SCOTT IAN: ‘We’ve Only Ever Had Two Singers, That’s The Way I Look At It’

Brett Woodward of The Sydney Morning Herald recently conducted an interview with ANTHRAX guitarist Scott Ian. A few excerpts from the chat follow below.

On the creative potential of his suite of Mac gadgets:

Scott: “If you walked backstage at [Autralia’s] Soundwave [festival], all those bands and crew, you’d see dozens of people sitting around watching videos, online, sending emails, or getting ideas down. It’s keeping people from becoming alcoholics and drug addicts. I know that’s a weird way to look at it, but it has to be true!

”Back when we first started touring in the ’80s, I could completely understand why bands from the ’60s and ’70s started boozing and doing drugs on tour. Fight off boredom and get through the day until the exciting part, the show!”

On ANTHRAX‘s singer changes over the years:

Scott: “We’ve only ever had two singers, that’s the way I look at it. It’s Joey [Belladonna, 13 years as vocalist] and John [Bush, 14 years], and that’s it. I’ve been lucky enough to have worked with two amazing singers.

”Across our catalogue, songs off ‘Fistful of Metal’ [1984] certainly sound different to songs off ‘Volume 8’ [1998], which sound different to songs off ‘We’ve Come for You All’ [2003]. But to me, as one of the parents of the whole thing, I see them all as my children. Some have brown hair, some have blond hair, some have red hair!”

On thrash metal’s longevity:

Scott: “It comes down to the truth of the music we’ve been making since the beginning of our career. We were just kids, exactly like our fans. We’ve only ever been honest about what we do and that still holds true.

“All these years later, kids still connect with that. You look out into our audience, amongst a sea of people, 15-, 16-, 17-year-olds who are listening to records we made 26 years ago. It’s mind-blowing. People connect to the honesty and they stay with us. That loyalty is a two-way street.”

On ANTHRAX‘s upcoming “Anthems”, an EP of covers by AC/DC, RUSH, CHEAP TRICK, THIN LIZZY, JOURNEY and BOSTON:

Scott: “These covers were done all over the world, recording guitars in hotel rooms and backstage on laptops. We send tracks back and forth; our guys mix it and make it sound like a live band playing together in one room, which couldn’t be further from the truth! Though, at some point this year, I’m going to come into the jam room at my house, or Charlie‘s [Benante, drums], with some ideas recorded on my iPhone. I swear, we get in that room, sit there and stare at each other in silence, and then the shit just starts to happen. Someone will come up with that one little part, the genesis. Two hours later you’ve got the arrangement and a whole new song.”


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