With the exception of Scott Ian, Anthrax has pretty much kept out of the public eye for the last 15 years or so. Sure, in that time, the band released two albums, but it wasn’t until they teamed up with Metallica, Megadeth and Slayer last year that they really bounced back into public consciousness. And while many metalheads grew up with the band, the casual fan might be a little rusty on their back catalog. At least that’s what The Village Voice’s Christopher Weingarten found when he asked 15 unidentified rock critics the following question: name the four Anthrax albums with Joey Belladonna on vocals.
Of his esteemed panel, only 2 were able to rattle off Spreading the Disease, Among the Living, State of Euphoria and The Persistence of Time, something we did effortlessly, even though they didn’t ask us (thanks Christopher). Five were able to guess between one and three, but ten weren’t able to guess any. 10 people that edit magazines, websites and alt-weeklies that weren’t even able to come up with Among the Living? Wow, ignorant much? It gets worse. One of the critic’s excuses was “Cali metal doesn’t do much for me.” I’m sure that an age gap plays into the equation, but even if Anthrax is the least essential of the big four, they’re still an iconic band that anyone who gets paid to write about music should at least have a basic working knowledge of.