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Anthrax - Anthrology: No Hit Wonders Review

by Zane Ewton

Anthrax has enjoyed a resuscitated status lately. Their last studio album We've Come for You All was their best in years and the "tribute" to their early days The Greater of Two Evils showed a band still excited to crush skulls with the same thrashing energy they had 20 years ago.

Watching the current lineup of Anthrax really starting to go somewhere was exciting, so it seems curious that the band would want to take a step back and reunite the "essential" lineup, as it has come to be known. It is that version of Anthrax and its output on Island records that is on display with Anthrology: No Hit Wonders.

Anthrax, along with Slayer, has been one band that ushered in thrash metal in the 80's and despite the passing trends and fads have stuck to their guns, holding on to a loyal fan base. The band has always fought heavy metal clichés and has championed many different kinds of music.

Anthrology demonstrates what Anthrax does best, though. This is a full sonic assault. When the band is on their game they sound like full artillery descending on a steel factory. Tracks like "A.I.R.", "Gung-Ho" and "Caught in a Mosh" are examples of speed metal at its finest.

The two disc collection is a little top heavy with disc one throwing out the real essential Anthrax tracks from albums like 1985's Spreading the Disease and the follow-up Among the Living.

Long time fans, especially those from the Belladonna era will already have the best cuts from this collection. For the uninitiated, Anthrology is a perfect introduction to one of the seminal American heavy metal bands.

Looking back at the past of a band usually means the best days are behind them. The last few Anthrax albums have given us a band that still has some life, but a reunion tour and hits compilation seems like a step backwards. Hopefully it is just a quick cash-in, and then we can get back to making some music.

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