ANTHRAX drummer Charlie Benante spoke to Australia's "Everblack" podcast about the progress of the songwriting sessions for the follow-up to 2016's "For All Kings" album. "There's a collection of songs so far that are very, very, I would say, a little more in the aggressive style," he said (hear audio below). "There's gonna be a lot more coming, but as of right now, I think we're off to a really good start."
Asked if the next ANTHRAX album will have a lyrical concept behind it, similar to the way some of the tracks on 2011's "Worship Music" were apparently inspired by the zombie drama "The Walking Dead", Benante said: "We did have a song about zombies on 'Worship Music' and then 'For All Kings'… The last three records that we did, I'm trying to tell a story, especially with the album covers and stuff like that. But it's not a concept or anything like that. It's just a collection of songs at where we were at that moment. Which is exactly what the next one is gonna be — just a collection of songs that reflect where we've been."
Charlie's latest comments echo those he made last June, when he told Metal Rules that the songs that ANTHRAX is working on now "are a little more aggressive and angrier, only because the climate we are all living in is reflected in our music.
"When I come in with something, I have hopes and dreams that the song is going to be as great as I hear it in my mind," he added. "I think the other guys stepped up as well and want to hit a home run on each song. Everybody in the band stepped up their game."
Released in February 2016, "For All Kings" was called by some critics ANTHRAX's strongest album to date. Its arrival followed a five-year period during which the band experienced a rebirth of sorts, beginning with ANTHRAX's inclusion on the 2010 "Big Four" tour with METALLICA, SLAYER and MEGADETH, and continuing with the 2011 release of comeback LP "Worship Music".
ANTHRAX's upcoming disc will be the band's third full-length release since the return of singer Joey Belladonna, who came back into the fold for the "Big Four" shows, in the process helping inspire a new wave of creativity.
Last year, ANTHRAX supported SLAYER on the first and second leg of the latter outfit's last-ever North American run of dates.