Metal On Loud recently conducted an interview with ANTHRAX singer Joey Belladonna. You can now watch the chat below. A couple of excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
Metal On Loud: You've been around for ANTHRAX's biggest successes, like [the "Among The Living" album]. It has really big hits on it. Yet you've been out of the band for eighteen years. How do you look back at your departure from ANTHRAX, that period?
Joey: "While I was out? Or before I was [out]?"
Metal On Loud: How do you look back at that [entire] period [when you were out of ANTHRAX]?
Joey: "You know what? I was on my own. There's nothing like being on your own after being in a band. You just don't have all that to rely on. [I had] barely any assistance that came along with me, like it was gonna be, like,'No problem.' I wasn't gonna turn into Phil Collins overnight, you know? It just doesn't work. You know what? I was okay. I was sad to see that thing [happen]. I don't know what they were really going for; they were going for some nineties style, and apparently I wasn't the guy or something. That's all I can think of. That's enough for me to realize that, what do you do? You don't beg your way back in. So I just maintained playing music, as I do all the time. So I haven't stopped."
Metal On Loud: If you look at the stuff that the guys did while you were away, how do you look at that music? How do you feel about that music?
Joey: "It seemed good. I don't know. If I was to compare it, I didn't hear anything that we were doing that wasn't as good [as what they ended up doing with replacement singer John Bush]. I didn't hear anything that blew me away. I thought the music end of it was good, John's decent, but just the overall thing… I think we had something cool there, and I didn't hear that [in the music they made with John]. But that wasn't meaning it wasn't good; it just wasn't my idea of better, being better about it. It was just different, you know? I enjoyed the style that they were trying to dig into. I think they kind of straightened it all out a little bit, but it wasn't as thrashy in some ways sometimes too. I don't know. It gets crazy after a while when you're trying to explain it all. It's, like, it was what it was, you know?"
Metal On Loud: After the 2005 reunion tour, we had to wait for five more years to see you rejoin the band. Was it a hard decision to make [to return to the group]?
Joey: "No, that was the weird thing again. They got someone else [Dan Nelson] for a little while. If I only knew what was going through anybody's head... I mean, you're talking about somebody that no one even knew or even was experienced or something like that. It was kind of out of my hands, you know?"
Metal On Loud: I tried to figure out what was happening at that time.
Joey: "I wish I knew too. I remember my friend called me, and he goes, 'Dude, they got another singer. I just read that.' And I'm, like, 'Really? Oh, wow! I didn't know that. Okay. Oh, well.' I wasn't even sure they wanted to be a band again with me. I couldn't tell you. It was cool [when we did the the reunion in 2005], but it wasn't like when I got back and when we did the 'Big Four' [shows in 2010 and 2011]. That was when they seemed to wanna do something for real."
Metal On Loud: I think I read somewhere it had to do with your indecisiveness.
Joey: "No, there was no indecisiveness [on my part]. I was there. I wouldn't have come back in the first place, and again, you know? I don't know why they would have said [that it had to do with my indecisiveness]. I had no reason to do that. They got another guy. I mean, it was really quick. It was too quick. It was almost like you've been dating and I didn't know about it — that kind of thing. It was too quick. Too quick."
ANTHRAX's February 15 concert at the Barrowland in Glasgow, United Kingdom was filmed for a DVD, to be released later this year via Megaforce. Seventeen cameras, including five GoPros and a full-size camera crane, captured more than two hours of ANTHRAX favorites that were voted onto the evening's set list by fans and included "Madhouse", "Be All, End All", "Breathing Lightning" and "A.I.R.", followed by ANTHRAX's classic 1987 album "Among The Living" performed start to finish. In addition to the live footage, the DVD will include "fly-on-the-wall" interviews and other B-roll shot on the band's tour bus, backstage, in hotels and elsewhere.
The DVD is being produced and directed by Paul Green of the Manchester, U.K.-based Paul Green Productions who has filmed concerts for OPETH, THE DAMNED, Gary Numan, THE LEVELLERS and many others.