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Red Lamb Concert Review, Austin TX 3/9/2013

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I’ve been an Anthrax fan ever since I found a used copy of Spreading the Disease on cassette at Unicorn Records in 1986.  That tape was in regular rotation in my old 66 Nova 4dr and subsequent Ford Ranger for many years.  I’ve worn out countless copies.  Seen them 6 times since 1987 and they always rocked it live.  The John Bush era really never did it for me but the one time I saw them live with him, they were good.

In the last year or so, Dan Spitz, former lead player of Anthrax, has been working on a new project called Red Lamb.  I’ve always like Dan’s solos and was happy for a chance to see him play live…and of course to have an opportunity to get the book signed.

I got to the show in north Austin around 10pm and pretty much just hung outside during the opening acts.  I just wasn’t interested.  I think it was sometime around midnight that Red Lamb hit the stage.  I had listened to a song or 2 online and while it’s not my kind of rock, it’s not bad.  Dan’s solos make it worth it for sure.  Patrick Johansson (Yngwie Malmsteen) had recorded the drums on the album but unfortunately didn’t tour.  The touring drummer, Kevan Roy was just fine.  His footwork was pretty impressive.  Don Chaffin handled the vocals duties and sounded good.  Bassist Alan Goldstein (Aghora) was pretty awesome to watch.  While not needing to be very busy with this type of music, you could still see moments of the dude’s talent.  C’mon, he’s in Aghora!  No slouches in that band.

And then there’s Dan.  His playing was sharp and his solos were quite awesome, as expected.  He certainly seems like a quiet guy, very reserved and I imagine that the heart attack and subsequent triple bypass probably slowed him down a bit.  He didn’t speak much and talked about this tour being done to help promote Austism awareness.  He mentioned that his twin sons, Brendan and Jaden, both have the condition and that the song Puzzle Box (co-written by Dave Mustaine) was about his family’s daily struggles.  I can’t even begin to imagine.

They cut 2 songs from the end of their set.  There was plenty of time left.  One they finished, Dan promptly got off stage and went straight to the bus.  There were only about 20-30 people there.  So no meet and greet time.  I hung out for a bit after to see if he’d come out and was talking with the bassist.  I asked is he could get Dan to sign the book.  I had some CD covers in there as well, but told him that the book was most important.  He took the stuff on the bus and came out a few minutes later with everything signed.  What a champ!  Alan was a super nice guy, too.  He said, “Dan said thanks a lot for coming and for bringing some stuff to sign.”   I’ll take that!  I went home right after that…driving through a deluge for 20 miles.

It was a good time.  Go see the tour!

My pics suck horribly.  The lighting was awful and so is my camera.

Written by The Metal Files

March 11, 2013 at 10:17 am

My Life With Anthrax

with 2 comments

I remember stopping in Unicorn Records on Saturday afternoon in 1986 and perusing Drew’s used cassettes. he had Spreading The Disease in there for $3.99 and I bought it based on a few reviews I had read in some metal magazines. Needless to say I was blown away and became an Anthrax fan instantly. I went through several copies of that cassette between 86 and the time it came out on CD. I always had a copy handy in my car between 86 and 88. It was a great album to listen to on the way to school.

Fistful of Metal – 1984
I heard this album shortly after hearing Spreading the Disease, I believe from Daniel’s older brother if memory serves me correctly. I’ve always liked this album a lot. Very raw. Very heavy. Coincidentally, my current guitarist played with Neil Turbin for about 3 years after his exit from Anthrax. (Note the drummer).

Armed and Dangerous EP – 1985
Exit Turbin, enter Belladonna. It’s a great EP. Listened to it today while in the shower. Raise hell! Not much of a fan of their cover of God Save the Queen but the album showed Belladonna’s range. His versions of the Turbin songs were pretty damned good.

Spreading the Disease – 1985
I think I have this ranked as my 6th favorite metal album ever. Gung-Ho is a bit goofy, but it showcased Charlie Benante’s incredible double bass stamina. The Enemy, Lone Justice, Medusa, A.I.R. are my faves but I never skip any tracks when it’s in the player.

Among the Living – 1987
Hmmm. Well, they got better production but something had changed. Seeing them in the magazines looking like goofballs with TMNT stuff on everything sort of knocked them down a notch or 2 in my eyes. The title track, Skeletons in the Closet, Indians, NFL and Caught in a Mosh were the best tracks but they got a bit silly in their lyrics. I did see this tour with Testament opening (Legacy Tour) and was simply blown away by both bands. Charlie Benante was worth the price of admission alone. Then they played I’m the Man. Ugh. What a let down. I’ve hated that song since I first heard it.

State of Euphoria – 1988
C’mon guys. They really started slipping on this one. I think my favorite song is their cover of Trust’s Antisocial. I guess it’s not a bad overall but it’s far from great. I saw this tour when they opened for Ozzy. They rocked it.

Persistence of Time – 1990
Ugh. The album hurts my ears in general. Again, their cover song is the best song. They did a version of Joe Jackson’s Got the Time. Belly of the Beast is alright. Saw this tour when they opened for Maiden in 1991. They were alright.

Sound of White Noise – 1993
Exit Belladonna, enter John Bush. I was a bit thrilled that Bush was in the band…until I heard the album. Only is the only song I like. The rest sucked. Really.

Stomp 442 – 1995
What? Pass.

I stopped caring. Thanks for reading.

Written by The Metal Files

January 1, 2009 at 2:26 pm