ANTHRAX vocalist John Bush recently spoke to Australia's Full Strength about the departure of longtime bassist Frank Bello. "Yeah, that's a real bummer of a topic," Bush admitted. "Frankie has been a main player in ANTHRAX for years. There were just a couple of things that happened recently [including a rumored physical altercation between Bello and his uncle, ANTHRAX drummer Charlie Benante — Ed.], and that caused some internal strife within the band.
"I don't really look at this as a permanent thing. I really do believe that this is just a hiatus thing for Frankie. He just needs to clear his head about a few things, and perhaps for some of us to clear our heads about a few things as well.
"I love Frankie. He's been an important part of this band, but being in a band is kind of like being in a marriage. And you know what, a lot of marriages go through a lot of rough and turbulent times! (Laughs)
"ANTHRAX has been around for over twenty years, and needless to say it's seen people come and go, and it's therefore sometimes difficult to keep it together. It really is a challenge to do that, and I think some people find that they grow apart a little bit after so many years, and therefore they need to find something else that inspires them, motivates them or give them clarity in life. So I think that's exactly what the situation is here. We'll move on in the meantime, and the bass player we have filling in at the moment played with me for years and years in a band called ARMORED SAINT. That's Joey Vera. There's no comparison to what Frankie represented in ANTHRAX by any means, but Joey is an unbelievable bass player, and he's very happy to have the opportunity to play with us. He'll definitely give his all in the time that he's with us.
"This is a hiatus I'm sure, and Frankie will be back at some point. Its kind of a drag that this happened just before we're coming to Australia."
Read Bush's entire interview with Full Strength at this location.