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Baker's Dozen

Taking Out The Thrash: Scott Ian Of Anthrax's Top Albums From 1986
JR Moores , March 8th, 2016 10:22

To mark 30 years since 1986, a pivotal moment for metal, Anthrax main man Scott Ian talks JR Moores through his 13 top albums from that year, moving from thrash classics through to landmark hip-hop and pop releases


Sepultura – Morbid Visions
Danny Lilker [original Anthrax bassist] was probably the first person I knew who was into Sepultura because Danny was always into the most extreme bands before anyone else. I got Bestial Devastation later but Morbid Visions was the first one I heard. I immediately gravitated to it. I wouldn't have put it on my list if I didn't love it but, when I initially got into this record, and this isn't meant as disrespect, it felt like baby Slayer. You could hear the influences. They'd obviously listened to Hell Awaits quite a bit. That didn't bother me at all because there was something about their sound that was different enough to not write them off as a Slayer rip-off. I was hearing enough in there to think: "This band has something to say." Maybe just because they were from Brazil so it sounded a little bit different. And then, where they went next with their sound, just becoming one of the best bands on the planet. This was my introduction to them and it still puts a giant smile on my face.

And Andreas Kisser [who joined Sepultura in 1987] stood in for you when you were on paternity leave in 2011.

I've got nothing but massive respect and love for everyone who's ever been in that band. I love all of them as a unit, and separately, and I love their music. I couldn't get James Hetfield; he was a little bit busy on those shows [laughs]. So Andreas was the first person I thought of when I knew I was taking those Big Four dates off to be there when my son was born. Andreas is one of the best rhythm players on the planet. It had to be somebody that people were going to be excited about and go, "Holy fuck, Andreas?! Are you kidding me?"

We actually got to play one show together. Me, Kirk [Hammett], James [Hetfield], Kerry [King] and Dave Mustaine were going to be on the cover of Guitar World magazine and they were doing the photoshoot and interview at the Milan show. My son was two weeks old and there was no way I was leaving. My wife, Pearl, said to me, "Look, you're going to be gone for 36 hours. You're not going to miss anything and you're really going to be bummed at yourself if you're not a part of this piece of history. Please go." So I flew to Milan, did the photoshoot and interview, and then, well okay, who's playing the show? I said Andreas should play because I hadn't picked up a guitar for months. Then we decided Andreas will play the first 25 minutes or so and then, when we get to 'Indians', I'll come out, I'll scream the "war dance" part and play the next 30 minutes, with Andreas, both of us together. It was one of the coolest moments in my life, standing at the side of the stage, watching Anthrax. Kerry King is standing next to me and I'm like, "Dude, this is amazing. Anthrax is great!" Kerry goes: "Shit, I never get to see Slayer." Then I walked out on "war dance" and the place went nuts because nobody knew I was there. It was so fucking heavy. It was mind-blowing how tight it was with the two of us playing. I've been on stage with Sepultura too. They've had me come on at festivals and play Sepultura songs. I love that band.