ANTHRAX's "rock 'n' roll comeback story of 2011" began in 2009, reaching a pinnacle with last month's surprise Grammy nomination for the track "I'm Alive" in the category of "Best Rock/Metal Performance. " The surprise was that the acknowledgement came more than a year after the track's September 13, 2011 release on the band's critical smash album, "Worship Music", which was named one of the best metal albums of the year by numerous media outlets.
There were great highs — Joey Belladonna's return, the "Big Four" concerts, playing Yankee Stadium, the overwhelming acclaim of "Worship Music", the "bare-bones, guerilla" set at last summer's Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival, the band's "Got The Time" being the first metal song played on Mars — and there were challenges as well, but, ANTHRAX — Charlie Benante (drums), Scott Ian and Rob Caggiano (guitar), Frank Bello (bass) and Joey Belladonna (vocals) — redefined the joy of rooting for the underdog.
ANTHRAX recently spent time in the studio recording several cover versions of some of their favorite rock classics, to be included with the upcoming re-release of "Worship Music". In addition to RUSH ("Anthem") and BOSTON ("Smokin'") covers, ANTHRAX is also recording its versions of AC/DC's "T.N.T.", JOURNEY's "Keep On Runnin'" and BLACK SABBATH's "Neon Knights". The latter song is expected to appear on the upcoming Ronnie James Dio tribute album which is being assembled by the singer's widow and longtime manager Wendy Dio. "Worship Music" has sold more than 100,000 copies in the U.S. since its September 2011 release, according to Nielsen SoundScan.