Well, looks like Anthrax is definitely coming out with a new album this year. We knew they’d headed into the studio last month, but they made it official with a hashtag, #AnthraxAlbum2015, and a snippet of a new song that they released yesterday via a short video. Some might recognize the riffage as the music that the band played a piece of at Knotfest. We caught up with the album’s producer, Jay Ruston, to talk about how the albums’ coming along so far.
“They’ve been writing songs for well over a year, Ruston tells Metal Insider. “I sat in and helped them record the demos and basically made sure everything was heading in the right direction. Once we hit the point to where they felt they were ready to go, around Thanksgiving, we decided it was time to get going. We have 18 songs we’re working with that made the cut. We’re going to try to record everything just to see what turns out the best. During the recording, this Game of Thrones thing popped up, this mixtape. Luckily, one of the songs that was already on the list that we all loved fit perfectly, and just needed the lyrics to be adjusted slightly. So that song’s actually completely finished, mixed, mastered and already sent off to the Game of Thrones people. I don’t know when it’s coming out, but I’m really excited. It’s a cool song, and it’s going to be the first thing people hear since Worship Music.”
As for the song that’s in the video update, it doesn’t have an actual title yet, but Ruston calls it one of his favorite songs. “It’s six or seven minutes long,” he says. “It’s got this whole incredible middle breakdown bridge in it where Frank has this killer bass line and Jon Donais came in and played this cool melodic solo over to of itp. That’s a really exciting tune. It was the song they played about 30 seconds of at Knotfest. When we decided to put something out there, we weren’t that concerned about it because it’s already been heard.”
The band is working on the album in waves, Ruston says. “Out of those 18 songs, we’ve got 8 that we’re working on. I didn’t want to get too far ahead, because instead of Joey coming in and singing a ton of songs, I wanted to break it up a little bit and finish these eight, then start another bunch from scratch, which we’ll probably do in March. In the meantime, we’re going to finish this first batch.”
This will be the first time Ruston has produced an entire Anthrax album, as he came in at the end of Worship Music, “This record, I’ve been here since the first riff was played in the room,” he says. “It’s been really fun to be in there from the beginning, and I still have a good objective outlook on the whole record, even though I’ve been hearing these songs for so long, because they’ve been changing as we’ve been recording them.”
So there you have it. New Anthrax is definitely coming this year, and they’ve got a hashtag to prove it. That means that with Megadeth heading into the studio in March, and Slayer coming out with something this year, three of the big four bands will almost definitely have a new album out in 2015. Your move, Metallica!