at Z 7 in Pratteln - 24.03.2003


photos by Stefan "Absolut_Evidence" Vogelaar   

review by  dalia "gryphon_spirit" di giacomo 

The public use of these photos  is strictly prohibited without written permission.

Anthrax are again here in Pratteln after few months, they performed a simply triumphal gig this autumn, and one of the pics taken during that mythical evening landed on the March 2003 issue of the German magazine Metal hammer spicing the article "Alle zeichen stehen auf Sturm" . I remember that i had my perplexities about   that gig but i was impressed by all those mega ovations and by that blind enthusiasm of their fans. Anthrax are for me a mile stone of the metal world, and were one of the bands that introduced me to hard sounds (fistful of metal ah!!!) and their stage acting is so self- assured that they could play with closed eyes and plugged  ears. But id didn't understand all that delirium. Clear if you are not a fan , you cannot understand...well i will try again today. A really enjoyable and interesting  interview with drummer Charlie Benante is a good basis, though i cannot forget for example that in my opinion  many tracks of the new album "We've come for you all" remind me too much of the old Metallica...True, the big difference between the gig of this evening and that of past autumn is the new stuff: today Anthrax will perform songs taken from their new CD, we will see how they will impact. The venue is already good crowded though much more audience is awaited. We will  see...


AFTER ALL   http://listen.to/afterall   

at 20:30 After All take the stage proposing  a rather speed thrash metal with many Metallica and somehow Iron Maiden influences . Their frontman Piet Focroul is rather atypical but the vocals are good and the band as a whole presents a good mobility. They try their best with a good amount of energy and pulsing guitars with some decent solos. the responsibility to open the way for a band like Anthrax is not an easy task, yes but well, it's rather indifferent who supports Anthrax, cause Anthrax in my opinion are the supporters of themselves, Anthrax  have no problems in order to warm up an audience! So After All should take it a little bit easy, the fact is that their music is not that exceptional. Not bad at all, but also nothing really capturing. Energetic with Beneath the Flesh and Rectify, from album Mercury Rising, and hammering with Exhale for example, but i don't like so much their tempo changes,  there is no  enthralling chord or a single passage that captures my blood. In a few words, though the ingredients are all present, like crunching guitars, lead solos, strong drum support  (though the drums are too sharp, too "clear" for me)  percussing passages, well they don't catch me. Another example is the track Shadow Wall, merciless drum powered,  which showcases indeed galloping guitars, with crunching beginning , but there is not the right alchemy  . The cover version of La Muerta "Black God , white Devil" was persuading , though a bit  on the road hard rock /thrash, this is to say the right  music i see as much gladly as  bulls  see red fluttering  drapes (this point anyway is only a question of personal tastes). Anyway  a certain quantity of headbanging  is not missed, so the Belgians  suceed finally to give vitality to  the Swiss cathedral, in particular during the last song proposed : a speed version of Metal Militia. The song Crave for more is dedicated to Anthrax and the crew, with whom they toured together . 


beneath the flesh


behind the mask I

crave for more

candle of burning red


lost/ insane

black god, white devil

shadow wall

metal militia

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ANTHRAX   www.anthrax.com     

The Z7 now is good crowded, Anthrax are always Anthrax, very difficult not to attend one of their gigs when they knock at the door of your town. at 21:44 that damned Blues Brother intro echoes in the venue and the adrenaline is raising in the veins. Anthrax appear on the stage among applauses and start off with the opener of their new album "What doesn't die", a great song, really heavy rhythmed, trashy and catchy, pity that sounds so much Metallica of the black album era or even before. Metallica at their old best , whose flavors are now re-proposed by Anthrax, that with "We've come for you all" have undertaken the old thrash metallica-like path, changing a little bit their general style. The success is ensured and the enthusiasm of the crowd grows and grows. The song is interpreted in a very good way, sounds superb live. Anthrax seem to me in  enough good mood, energetic like always but taking more care about the quality of sound and of performance if compared with the gig i saw last time, where the enthusiasm of the fans was maybe even bigger, but the sound was in my opinion noisy confused, some songs almost unrecognizable...(for example Only), underlining the more "violent" aspect of their music. This time, and within really few months, i see a band in which something is changed, not so openly, but substantially. The better characteristics like self-assurance, general stage acting, John Bush 's entertaining and enthusiastic qualities, are still there...but now we have, added as bonus, a better attention to the chords, a bigger serenity, without giving up a single ounce of heaviness. the show seems to begin very good, it goes on with Black Dahlia (I'm blushing, finally a metal song dedicated to my name!!). Scott Jan is giving his best , it seems even happy and provide punctual back vocals besides good guitar sounds. "Switzerland!! you were fucking crazy last time, we don't expect anything less tonight!" eh yes Anthrax remember very well how overwhelming was their gig here in October, and obviously try to repeat that success. with class tecnique they propose Got the Time and Caught in a Mosh. The sounds fall like they were hammer blows, while moshing and headbanging begin to spread. In particular the men among the crowd seem to be in seventh heaven. And the band still has for me a kind of aura full of pure machismo. But this time tempered by a kind of occult joy and satisfaction. Bush announces that tomorrow they will play in Milan and present the new album asking "do you know it?" And from the new album again another song, very awaited, i was longing for it and now it's the moment of Safe Home. Safe Home is another song that in its rhytmed part sounds a lot like the old Metallica, but in its melodic refrain it's unique, breathtaking, striking and incredibly persuading. And it's played with passion, though some note comes out faulty. In Scott Jan a deep satisfaction filters out, one can see that this song represents a lot for him. Then the gig goes on with In my World , heavy thrash like steamroller, with able changes of tones concerning the vocals, followed by Inside out, particularly rich in nuances and facettes. But it seems that the story of the gig is just began cause Fueled, Anti social , Mad House and Black Lodge really involve the audience. ANTI- SOCIAL - ANTI-SOCIAL" is repeated more times by Bush and then by the audience. Bush finds also the opportunity to shake the hand of After All singer, who is now attending this part of the gig in the photopit.
Nobody (fucking) knows!!! is announced, and this song gives us moments of thunderous drums, rhythmed stop starts, vibrant sounds. Finally we land on NFL and on the mythical Only. "Onlyyyy!" shouts Bush - "Onlyyy!" is repeated by the crowd. During Only the moshing is impressive, unfortunately we have again a mellow sound with problems of amplification too, but all in all this evening Only is performed much better than it was in October.
22:57, now it's the time for Scott Jan to speak, and very openly, mentioning the "fucking war" too. This is a kind of end of set which fades into the memory of their first fantastic album: Fistful of Metal. "Do you know Fistful of metal?": it can only be the turn of Metal Thrashing mad now, the track symbol for a whole album, warmly welcomed like expected. I am the Law closes
then a great concert, No to be forgotten: the good performance of bassist Bello and drummer Benante. The seraphic lead guitar Gaggiano could have been a bit more dynamic, while singer Bush was in good form, or at least this was the impression. There was no apotheosis like in October, there were a bunch of people less, but for sure the Z7 was assailed again by impressive and heavy vibes. 

dalia di giacomo



what doesn't die

black dahlia

got the time

caught in a mosh

safe home

in my world

inside out


anti social

mad house


nobody knows anything




metal thrashing mad


i am the law

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our interview with CHARLIE BENANTE


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