Anthrax Live in Chicago

By Tokemaster General, Contributor
Thursday, December 18, 2003 @ 1:57 PM

Anthrax Live at The Metro in C

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I would like to first start off saying, that those who had the opportunity to go to the show, and didn't, missed out on what I would call... one of the best heavy metal shows ever!

Anthrax played at the Metro, which is a small venue, but a great place to see a live band. It's up close and personal, and the acoustics are very good. I don't know if the show was sold out, but there had to be well over 1500 people there. They were also filming for a live DVD, and I believe, recording for a live album as well. They were supposed to do that 2 years ago while on the Priest tour, but it got bumped.

If Timothy Leary gave hyenas some acid, that's what the crowd acted like... absolutely INSANE! The mosh pit was intense and there was crowd surfing going on at all times. Sometimes there were like 3 or 4 people up in the air at once. There was this younger girl that got up and she was being literally thrown around like a rag doll. Seemed like she was having fun. Then this big Chewbacca-looking dude had his shirt off and tried to surf. He must have weighed close to 280-300 pounds. That lasted for about a whole 4 seconds. It was actually pretty funny. The camera was getting everyone crowd surfing and moshing... the whole floor seemed to be one big pit. It was a... ummm… Madhouse.

They kicked off with the opening track off their new album, “What Doesn't Die.” Great way to open a set. “Got the Time” was next, and Frank showed everyone what a real bass player is made of. Bello, Harris, Burton, Butler are some of the finest there are when it comes to the 4 strings. Take note you "nu" school wannabe's. Scott had this menacing look on his face when he hit the first chord to “Caught in a Mosh.” It looked like he was trying to say, "You know what's coming -- you've been warned." The place erupted when the drums kicked in and the party was officially underway. I felt sorry for the people who literally got "caught in a mosh" because a few of them looked like they got hit by a train or something at the end of the show. Mr. Bush dedicated the song “Refuse to Be Denied” to all the armed forces out overseas, and made it clear that we should thank those people for fighting for our freedom, which should never be taken for granted. The crowd screamed at the top of their lungs to get that song started.

Almost after every song, the crowd chanted, "Anthrax, Anthrax, Anthrax." John made it clear why the band loves Chicago and thanked the crowd for showing support. When people do that, he said, it makes it all worthwhile, and this applied to everywhere they played. After they played “Nobody Knows,” Charlie did a drum solo. If you have heard that song on the new album, you will know that 'Charlie don't cheat' and is considered one of the best metal drummers out there, period! Everyone started chanting "Charlie, Charlie, Charlie," and he stood up and raised his arms. We should have bowed. The guys on stage were having fun, and you could tell that they loved the crowd. They had smiles on their faces when everyone was singing the chorus to “Safe Home,” and the at the end of “Antisocial.” Rob was having fun as he smiled most of the night. He is a very underrated guitar player, and now that I have seen him a few times, my hats off to him. Nice job, Rob!

For their encore, they played about 3 songs. Before “Bring the Noise,” John also told the crowd that Anthrax were the ones to fuse metal and rap together first, not Fred Durst. He acknowledged the incident when Limp Bizkit came to Chicago over the summer, and was booed off the stage after 20 minutes of performing. Everyone cheered and whistled and the guys in the band laughed. They kicked into “Whiplash,” and played a couple verses of that. They played it better than Metallica. Everyone loved it! All of a sudden I look up, and there is this guy standing on top of the PA speakers with no shirt on. I thought it was some guy who managed to sneak up there, and then I realized it was John! The speakers had to be 15-20 feet high, and the crowd below was urging him to jump down into the sea of madness below. Well, not only did he jump into the crowd, he did a HEAD FIRST FLIP!! I know the cameras got him doing that, so look for it on the DVD. It was the perfect way to end the show.

And to top things off, I caught Scott's guitar pick, and Charlie's drumstick. Horns up indeed! Here is the setlist best to my knowledge, which lasted for about an hour and a half:

What Doesn't Die
Got The Time
Caught In A Mosh
Safe Home
Room For One More
Nobody Knows
Belly Of The Beast
Inside Out
Refuse To Be Denied
I Am The Law
Be All End All
Bring The Noise
*Whiplash (Only a verse or two)

Go see Anthrax if and when they come to your town. There are one of the best metal bands out there, and I was lucky enough to go see them last Friday. Check out what Charlie had to say about the show in his Blast Beat letter at www.anthrax.com.

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