Anthrax is a heavy metal band from New York City, USA. They were formed in 1981. The band is regarded as one of the pioneers of thrash metal because of their fast tempo songs and aggressive sound. They are also considered one of the most influential bands in heavy metal. Anthrax’s early albums “Fistful of Metal” and “Spreading the Disease” influenced other early thrash-metal groups, such as Metallica, Slayer and Megadeth. In fact, Anthrax are considered one of the “big four” in thrash metal. With over 11 studio albums released over their 40 year span as a band, there are a lot of songs to enjoy from their catalog. In this article, we’ll dive in depth on the 10 best of their albums, ranked in order.
10. For All Kings
In 2016, Anthrax released their 11th album For All Kings. It’s a return to the band’s thrash-metal roots after the experimental album “Worship Music”, which preceded it. The album features an appearance from singer Joe Duplantier of Gojira which lays down some vocals on the track “Evil Twin”. Though Anthrax took a different direction with their previous two albums, they managed to return to form with this record. What we get is great guitar riffs, thrashy screams from Joey Belladonna and some hardcore, early-80s metal influences from guitarist Scott Ian to create a solid album. For All Kings is surely one of the best albums in Anthrax’s catalog.
9. Worship Music
Worship Music was Anthrax’s 9th studio album. released in 2011. The album is a re-energized Anthrax that had been dormant since 2003. In fact, it was their first release of original music in over seven years, and welcomed the return of their original vocalist Joey Belladonna. The band took some time off to work on other projects, but came back swinging with this raw, triumphant return record. The album was widely liked and it became one of the most successful albums in Anthrax’s catalog. It peaked at #8 on the Billboard 200, with sales of just under 25,000. Worship Music is a great album and should not be missed, especially for fellow thrash metal fans.
8. Persistence Of Time
Released in 1990, Anthrax’s 5th studio album Persistence Of Time is regarded as their best “middle album”, sandwiched between the widely accepted “Sound Of White Noise” and “State of Euphoria” albums. Persistence Of Time continued the band’s trend of metallic, thrashy songs with a bit more musical variety. There are some punk influences evident in some songs, like “Be All, End All”, which fit the overall hardcore-punk theme Anthrax presented on this album.
7. We’ve Come For You All
In 2003, this album was released just before the band’s first hiatus. It was a mix of old school thrash and fast, melodic metal. While not as consistent as some of their previous releases, it’s still a stunning display of Anthrax in all their glory. Some tracks on the album, like “Crash”, “Superhero” and “Safe Home”, were considered among the band’s best tracks.
6. Fistful Of Metal
Anthrax’s debut album was released in 1984, and it showcased the band’s early sound and style. It was a mix of hardcore punk, thrash metal and pure aggression. The band was still developing their sound at this point, but the album remains a classic in their catalog. While some tracks like “Metal Thrashing Mad” and “I’m Eighteen” are regarded as amongst their best, the whole album deserves listening to.
5. Stomp 442
Their 7th studio album from 1995 is still regarded as one of the band’s best releases. It was a mixture of different genres, with a classic Anthrax sound and style. There are some punk-rock riffs mixed in with thrash, hardcore and melodic metal to create the overall sound they delivered. Stomp 442 was widely accepted by both critics and fans, selling more than 38,000 copies worldwide upon its release.
4. Spreading The Disease
Anthrax’s sophomore album was released in 1985. It’s widely regarded as one of the band’s most memorable releases. While some songs like “Aftershock” are almost thrash-metal avant-garde, the album does have enough fast, aggressive songs to satisfy every fan of the band. However, it does lack a few songs that were missing from their debut album, though. Some people find it a little bit boring compared to their debut album and not as heavy as they’d like.
3. Sound Of White Noise
Released in 1993, this album is regarded as one of the band’s most experimental works. It’s widely accepted that “Sound Of White Noise” was one of Anthrax’s best selling album and produced some of their biggest hits from the album. The song “Only” is still one of their most remembered tracks, and is played at every live show to this day.
2. State Of Euphoria
Released in 1998, this album is regarded as one of the band’s most outstanding releases. It was considered a classic in thrash metal by fans and critics alike, and many consider this album to be one of Anthrax’s best. With so many great songs, it’s hard to pick which songs the band will play on tour nowadays.
1. Among The Living
Among The Living is hands down the best Anthrax record ever released. It was voted as the top Anthrax album of all time by fans in 2006 and was also voted #4 on VH1’s 40 Greatest Metal Albums. It’s widely regarded as not only their best release, but also one of the greatest speed metal albums ever created. The band’s sound is evident here – it’s a mixture of fast and heavy riffs, amazing beats, solos and vocals that fit this genre perfectly.
Anthrax has made some incredible albums over the years. As well as being one of the best thrash metal bands, they’ve become one of the world’s biggest metal bands in general over the past decade. With a huge number of successful albums and tours, Anthrax is certainly a band to continue listening to for many years to come.