ANTHRAX Bassist Talks 'Anthems' EP, Split With ROB CAGGIANO

Tim Louie of The Aquarian Weekly recently conducted an interview with ANTHRAX bassist Frank Bello. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.

The Aquarian Weekly: You guys sound better than ever! I've felt ANTHRAX have always been there, but for some reason, the band seems to be firing on all cylinders right now.

Bello: Thanks! I think for metal in general, let's face it, the "Anthems" [covers EP] we just did, that's what we're influenced by — these great rock songs! It's rock in general. I don't think there is a lid to where you can stop. There shouldn't be an age or anything like that. Yeah, the band is 30 years old, whatever! Alright, we put out "Worship Music". Thankfully, people took to it as we did, because we're still fans of this stuff. We think that if we relate to it and we get it, we're just one of you. That's the way I feel about it. I don't think anybody's different. We're all fans of this music.

The Aquarian Weekly: Is that what sparked the idea to do a cover EP like "Anthems"?

Bello: The reason why that happened, if you ever came to an ANTHRAX soundcheck, you'd probably hear every other song but an ANTHRAX song. It's only when we have to go over a part or something didn't sound right or something — it's a very rare occurrence that we'll play an ANTHRAX song. But the fun part, [RUSH's] "Anthem", Charlie [Benante, drums] and I used to jam "Anthem". It's just an extension of where we were. That's where we came from. Think about it: AC/DC, RUSH, JOURNEY… We just released the BOSTON thing on the classic web site and people are freaking on that, which is great to hear because that is what we wanted to do. We just wanted to say this is where we also came from. That gave us our start and that is what sparked us.

The Aquarian Weekly: Can I ask about the band's recently departed guitarist, Rob Caggiano?

Bello: Yeah, sure! Rob is in VOLBEAT now. There is no animosity. It's weird. I think that people think there is animosity. I like VOLBEAT. I wish him luck! Rob just felt the need to do something different. I get it. It's all good. We got Jon Donais from SHADOWS FALL playing with us. We are so locked and loaded. We just came back from the Soundwave festival with METALLICA and SLAYER in Australia. That was insane! Jon played great! He fit right in, he clicked right in, so it's just onward, man. You know ANTHRAX, we just keep going.

The Aquarian Weekly: I'm glad to see ANTHRAX back in full force and full power again! Are there any plans for new ANTHRAX music just yet?

Bello: Absolutely! That's the plan. Now, we have a couple of more tours. I think we're touring the festivals in August again, and then we'll get real about writing. I mean, we all have music written. You can feel it in the band. It's getting to that time, which is cool. There's a great energy about it, especially now, because the vibe is so good. We have our management lined up, the record company, and there's a great new fanbase along with our regular fanbase. It's just a really good time.

Read the entire interview from The Aquarian Weekly.

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