— By Sean Derrick
Metal titans Anthrax, stopped by The Pageant in Saint Louis Monday for a show and nearly blew the roof off the building situated in The Loop.
Anthrax (Belladonna on vocals, Scott Ian on guitar, Frank Bello on bass, Charlie Benante on drums and Jonathan Donais on guitar) is one of metal’s Big 4. Being in this group is very exclusive, a quartet of groups (Anthrax, Metallica, Megadeth and Slayer) deemed to be the four most preeminent thrash metal bands in the country and the leaders of the thrash metal scene in the ‘80’s.
In town on a co-headlining tour with fellow thrash metal stalwarts Killswitch Engage the tour, called Killthrax, has been giving metalheads a great tour to look forward to.
Known for their lively stage show Anthrax wasted no time and came out strong with “Among the Living” and “Caught in a Mosh”, setting the tone for the rest of the set.
With a dual guitar attack and cutting rhythm section the band was as tight as ever. Coupled with lead singer Joey Belladonna’s strong vocals and you have a mix for a top-notch performance. Monday was no exception. In fact, they were really on top of their game Monday. Not once did their set falter or lose strength.
They even hit the way back machine in “Medusa” and “Madhouse” from their 1985 major label debut LP Spreading The Disease.
From a photographer’s viewpoint, the lighting was fantastic (which is saying something in the Pageant where lighting can sometimes be tricky for us photographers).
Their latest CD “For All Kings” has some really fantastic tracks on it and they brought some of those to the set Monday, highlighted by the epic “Blood Eagle Wings”. The only downside to the night was that they didn’t play “Carry On”, “Black Math” or “Vice of the People” from their new For All Kings Box Set that just came out. Maybe next time. As good as this show was, however, I can’t fault them for leaving them off.
Killswitch Engage are on tour supporting their latest release Incarnate. The band also has a very high-energy stage attack, so teaming up with Anthrax seemed like a perfect fit.
The quintet (original lead singer Jesse Leach, guitarists Joel Stroetzel and Adam Dutkiewicz, bassistMike D’Antonio and drummer Justin Foley) found many a friendly face at The Pageant as they ripped through songs such as “Hate by Design” “Arms of Sorrow” and “In Due Time” before being joined onstage by Belladonna for a rousing rendition of the Dio classic “Holy Diver”.
Devil Wears Prada and Code Orange rounded out the support acts with strong sets each.
The tour winds up in Boston at the House of Blues on May 7 after playing in Clifton Park, NY at the Upstate Concert Hall on Saturday and the Paramount in Huntington, NY tomorrow night. If you can get to one of those shows it would be worth your effort.
Be sure to check out the full gallery of photographs from the show after the set lists.
Anthrax Set list:
Among the Living
Caught in a Mosh
Fight ‘Em ‘Til You Can’t
I Am the Law
March of the S.O.D. (Stormtroopers of Death cover)
Blood Eagle Wings
Antisocial (Trust cover)
Killswitch Engage Set list:
Strength of the Mind
This Is Absolution
My Last Serenade
Arms of Sorrow
This Fire Burns
Alone I Stand
A Bid Farewell
Take This Oath
The End of Heartache
Hate by Design
Rose of Sharyn
Beyond the Flames
In Due Time
Holy Diver (Ronnie James Dio cover with Joey Belladonna on vocals)