The surprise isn’t that Anthrax’s “I’m Alive” received a Grammy nomination last night for Best Rock/Metal Performance; the surprise is that it comes more than a year after the track’s September 13, 2011 release on the band’s critical smash, Worship Music, which was named was of the best metal albums of 2011 by numerous media outlets, and provided the band with the rock’n’roll comeback story of the year. This is the fourth Grammy nomination for Anthrax – Charlie Benante/drums, Scott Ian and Rob Caggiano/guitars, Frank Bello/bass, Joey Belladonna/vocals.
“I was watching The Dave Matthews Band perform when I received a text saying ‘Congrats on the Grammy nomination!’,” said Benante. “Huh? I had lost all hope of ever being nominated for another Grammy, but I guess I was wrong. We put so much hard work into ‘Worship Music,’ and I am so honored to be nominated with a group of bands that have also sustained the Test of Time like the legendary Maiden and Megadeth. Heavy Metal is a Force, it has fans that range from six to 66, and I’m so proud to be a part of this Force…it’s in all of us.”
Anthrax fans waited eight long years for Worship Music, the band’s first studio album since 2003’s We’ve Come For You All, that features the return of “classic era” vocalist Belladonna making his first Anthrax album in twenty years. Since its September 13 release and subsequent debut at #12 on Billboard’s Top 200 Albums chart, Worship Music has received glowing praise from numerous critics and music tastemakers, including That Metal Show’s Eddie Trunk and Alexander Milas, editor of the UK’s Metal Hammer. Loudwire named it the #1 Metal Album of the Year.
The return of Belladonna and Anthrax’s remarkable renewal began in 2009 in a Cleveland hotel bar. Anthrax’s Benante and Ian, and Metallica’s Lars Ulrich were in town for the Rock’n’Roll Hall of Fame when Lars first brought up the idea of The Big Four – Metallica, Slayer, Megadeth and Anthrax, the four bands that served as the original architects for the “thrash/speed-metal” scene,” yet had never shared the same stage before. The first of (so far) fourteen Big Four events took place on June 16, 2010, culminating in what was Anthrax’s New York homecoming concert – The Big Four at Yankee Stadium on September 14, the day after Worship Music hit stores. “We came into The Big Four as the underdog,” said Benante. “We were the band that had the most to prove, and we’ve worked really, really hard to do that.”
Anthrax continues touring in support of Worship Music having just completed a European tour with Motorhead, and will be announcing North American plans for 2013 shortly.