Anthrax – For All Kings

When The Big Four announced their first ever tour together in 2010, the running order was pretty obvious to all but the most deluded keyboard cretin – Metallica would headline; Anthrax would open; and Slayer would play above Megadeth in the middle, because … well because they’re better. Since then however, both live and in the studio, Anthrax have been on a Leicester City-sized winning streak that has seen them shed their party-starting Jester status and seriously challenge their peers for a higher billing, with new album ‘For All Kings’ staking a claim for Best Thrash Album Since The Late 80s. With that in mind, opening the album with an instrumental that apes ‘Game of Thrones’ so closely you can practically smell the Wildlings is both ballsy and strikingly pertinent. Anthrax have never been a one-trick pony though, and although the album is bookended by the classic ‘Among The Living’-era thrash of ‘You Gotta Believe’ and ‘Zero Tolerance’, this is no 60-minute nostalgia trip. The ghost of said album may gently waft through the proceedings on occasion like an old girlfriend, but the band sound totally re-energised, Joey in particular finally sounding confident in what he’s singing, as the band blend that late 80s crunch with melodies so lush you could wash your hair in them. Whether it’s Scott Ian’s well-documented love of KISS schmoozing through tracks like ‘Breathing Lightning’ and ‘This Battle Chose Us,’ or the full metal battery of ‘Suzerain’ and ‘Evil Twin’, every track has its own character, and every track more than earns its place. If 2011’s ‘Worship Music’ was something of a toe in the water to see if the old magic was still there, then ‘For All Kings’ is a full-on, ball-slapping, dive-bomb into the fountain of youth.

Anthrax For All Kings

Categories: Album Reviews, Reviews

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