When the COVID-19 pandemic hit America over the past couple of years or so, everyone knows what the impact was on the live music business. Even as recent as last year, it caused so much live music to be paused and even cancelled. Thankfully, many acts out there found a workaround in the form of livestream concerts, including Anthrax, which recorded a livestream concert almost a year ago to the day on July 15 and 16, 2021. The concert was held as part of the band’s 40th Anniversary tour, which was sidelined as a result of the pandemic. Now on Friday, that livestream concert will be available on Blu-ray in the form of Anthrax XL through Megaforce Records, which ironically was the very first label to sign the band four decades ago. It is only fitting that the new recording will come through that label as part of the celebration of the band’s 40th anniversary. Part of what audiences will appreciate about the semi-live show is its set list, which will be discussed shortly. The band’s performance of that set list adds its own level of enjoyment to the recording and will be examined a little later. The bonus content that accompanies the recording’s main feature puts the finishing touch to the whole, completing the presentation. It will also be examined later. Each item noted is key in its own way to the whole of Anthrax XL. All things considered they make the recording one more of the year’s top new live Blu-rays and DVDs.
Anthrax XL, the new live recording from veteran hard rock band Anthrax, is a strong new offering from the band. It is a presentation that will find wipe appeal among the band’s fans. That is due in part to its featured set list. The 22-song set (though the track listing lists 21 tracks, the opening number is a medley of two songs, so the total is in fact 22) pulls from half of the band’s 12 albums, and even reaches into the band’s 1991 compilation record, Attack of the Killer Bs. It reaches all the way back to the band’s sophomore album, Spreading The Disease (1985) and all the way up to its most recent album, 2016’s For All Kings. Given, the set list completely omits any songs from The Sound of White Noise (1993) all the way up to We’ve Come For You All (2013), which makes for quite a bit of interest and certainly discussion. That’s because all of those albums were released, one after the other, so why would the band ignore those albums in its concert? Only the band knows. That aside, the set list pulls from a relatively healthy section of the band’s catalog, which is certain to appeal to plenty of audiences.
The band’s performance of the set list is just as notable as the set list itself. From beginning to end, the band keeps the energy flowing in every song. Front man Joey Belladonna presents so much energy as guitarist and founding member Scott Ian works through each driving riff. Drummer Charlie Benante and bassist Frank Bello add their own energy to the concert. Even being a livestream concert with no audience in front of the band, the group in whole still gives its all from one song to the next, knowing audiences were still watching albeit online. To that end, the band’s performance of each song is just as engaging and entertaining as if the band was performing in a full live setting. Keeping that in mind, the band’s performance of the set list makes for just as much for audiences to appreciate as the set list itself.
While the set list and the band’s performance thereof do plenty to keep audiences engaged and entertained, they are just a part of what makes the recording worth hearing. The bonus content that accompanies the recording adds another layer of enjoyment to the presentation. The first half of the bonus content comes in the form of a handful of extra performances, including that of ‘Aftershock,‘ yet another song featured in the band’s 1985 album, Spreading The Disease. In all, audiences get nearly 15 minutes of bonus performance from the band, making for so much more enjoyment in its own right. The second half of the bonus content features the band’s rehearsals for its livestream show as well as a tour of the places that have been key in Anthrax’s history, including Megaforce Records, Times Square, Electric Ladyland Studios, and even a pizzeria (of all places). The tour is guided by Ian and features him talking about the importance of each location to the band’s history. Audiences will be interested to learn from Ian at one point, about his love for the comic book, Judge Dredd. That is certain to connect even more audiences with the band. Between the extra live content, the tour and rehearsals, audiences get so much to appreciate in the bonus content, each part of the bonus content lives up to that title as it puts the finishing touch to the recording’s presentation. When it is collectively considered along with the rest of the recording’s content and the band’s performance thereof, the whole makes Anthrax XL a welcome presentation for any Anthrax fan.
Anthrax XL, the new live recording from Anthrax, is a welcome new offering from the veteran hard rock band. It is a fitting celebration of the band’s 40th anniversary, even being in a semi-live setting. The recording’s success comes in large part through its featured set list. The 22-song set list pulls from half of the band’s records. The band’s performance of said set list makes for its own enjoyment, as every band member brings his own energy to the whole. The bonus content that accompanies the main presentation adds even more performances to the set, making for yet more enjoyment. Guitarist Scott Ian’s tour of spots that have helped make Anthrax the band that it is today makes for its own unique addition to the bonus content that takes audiences even deeper into the band’s history. Each item examined is important in its own way to the whole of this recording. All things considered they make Anthrax XL another welcome addition to this year’s field of top new live recordings.
Anthrax XL is scheduled for release Friday through Megaforce Records. More information on the recording is available along with all of Anthrax’s latest news at:
In other news, Anthrax, Black Label Society and Hatebreed will hit the road together this summer.
The bands will launch a five-week tour July 26 in Phoenix, AZ. The tour is scheduled to run through Aug. 28 in Philadelphia, PA and will feature performances in cities nationwide, such as Charlotte, NC; Cincinnati, OH and Toronto, ON.
Anthrax’s upcoming tour is part of its ongoing 40th Anniversary celebration. For Hatebreed, the tour is a continued celebration of the 20th anniversary of the release of the band’s album, Perseverance. The band is in the midst of a tour with Parkway Drive, The Black Dahlia Murder, and Stick To Your Guns in support of the album’s release anniversary. The tour is scheduled to wrap June 5 in San Francisco, CA.
Black Label Society’s upcoming run with Anthrax and Hatebreed is in support of its latest album, Doom Crew, Inc., which was released last year through eOne. Front man Zakk Wylde spoke warmly of Anthrax and Hatebreed as he talked about the upcoming tour.
“ANTHRAX is one of The BESTEST LEGENDARY METAL/THRASH BANDS of ALL TIME – I have been buds with SCOTTY, CHARLIE, FRANKIE & JOEY for over 3O years & they are some of the BESTEST people you will meet,” he said. “JON is The BESTEST new addition ANTHRAX could ask for – HATEBREED are The BESTEST HARDCORE/EXTREME METAL band & BESTEST friends w/ANTHRAX & BLACK LABEL SOCIETY. The ANTHRAX + BLACK LABEL SOCIETY & HATEBREED TOUR is going to be one of the BESTEST TOURS EVER!!”
Hatebreed front man Jamey Jasta was also upbeat as he talked about the bands’ upcoming live run.
“Listen up! It’s gonna be a hot summer!” said Jasta. “Anthrax, BLS & Hatebreed will be on your case, in your face & ready to kick you and your father back in place! See you in the pit.”
Public ticket sale for the upcoming tour opens at 10 a.m. local time Friday. The tour’s schedule is noted below along with the full schedule for the various ticket sales open times.
Dates for the tour are as follows:
26 The Van Buren, Phoenix, AZ
28 Brooklyn Bowl, Las Vegas, NV
29 The Palladium, Los Angeles, CA
30 Heart Health Park, Sacramento, CA
1 Fillmore Auditorium, Denver, CO
2 Midland Theater, Kansas City, MO
4 Hard Rock Live Northern Indiana, Gary, IN
5 Oshkosh Arena, Oshkosh, WI
6 The Fillmore, Minneapolis, MN
8 Southside Ballroom, Dallas, TX**
9 Stubbs Waller Creek Amphitheater, Austin, TX
11 The Tabernacle, Atlanta, GA
12 House of Blues, Orlando, FL
13 The Fillmore, Charlotte, NC
15 The Andrew J Brady Music Center, Cincinnati, OH
16 Ryman Auditorium, Nashville, TN
18 The Fillmore, Silver Spring, MD
19 Main Street Armory, Rochester, NY
20 The Fillmore, Detroit, MI**
22 StageAE Outside, Pittsburgh, PA
23 History, Toronto, ON CANADA
24 Amphitheatre Cogeco, Trois Riviere/Montreal, QC
26 Coney Island Amphitheater, Brooklyn, NY
28 The Fillmore, Philadelphia, PA**
** Hatebreed will not appear on these dates.
* TICKET PRESALE DETAILS:
Citi Presale: Monday, April 18, 2022, 12:00 PM Eastern Time
Live Nation Presale: Tuesday, April 19, 2022, 10:00 AM Local Time
Spotify Presale: Tuesday, April 19, 2022, 2:00 PM EST
Ticketmaster Presale: Wednesday, April 20, 10:00 AM Eastern Time
Blabbermouth Presale: Wednesday, April 20, 10:00 AM Eastern Time
Knotfest Presale: Wednesday, April 20, 10:00 AM Eastern Time
Nederlander Presale: Thursday, April 21, 2022, 10:00 AM Pacific Time
Venue Presales: Thursday, April 21, 2022, 10:00 AM Local Time
All Presale end: Thursday, April 21, 2022, 10:00 PM Local Time
More information on Black Label Society’s upcoming run with Anthrax and Hatebreed is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:
More information on Hatebreed’s run with Anthrax and Black Label Society is available along with all of the band’s latest news at: