11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on 16 February 2010
Along with Metallica, Anthrax were one of the first thrash bands I got into back in the early eighties and Among the Living is a bona-fida thrash classic, and easily their best album. Quite simply, along with Metallica's 'Puppets' it is the best thrash album ever released, and should be in every lover of Metal's collection. From the opening chords of the title track the groove grabs hold and doesn't release it's grip until the very end. There are no filler tracks here, each one is a mini masterpiece. The obvious standouts are of course the title track, Caught in a Mosh, I Am the Law and the moshtastic Indians. This re-mastered edition is worth every penny, and sounds so much better than the original cd release. The music really thumps and is much more in line with my old vinyl copy.
The bonus tracks aren't that special, but the bonus live dvd is great. The full live show from the Odeon back on the Among the Living tour. I was fortunate enough to be at the show, and had worn out my old vhs copy of this, so it was a welcome addition to the package. The transfer is not great, but still encapsulates what Anthrax were all about back in the day, and why they were the best and most entertaining live band around back then. Awesome.
Unfortunately, whilst their future releases have all been pretty good, they never again managed to capture this kind of form and consistency. But, with Among the Living, for a while there, they were kings of the thrash world.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 31 January 2002
This album I first heard when I was into Metal at the end of the eighties. It stood out from most metal albums, listening to it now I can see why. It still sounds as great as ever. Full of furious riffs, a dirty bass and great drums. With Joey Belladonna screaming his heart out on top. But above all its got the tunes, the songs are a cut above anything else ive heard from anthrax and hardly any other metal band of that era. 'Indians', 'NFL efilnikufecin', and 'Imitation of life' stand out as the strongest tracks but they're all brilliant. A good starting point for anyone interested in Anthrax or thrash metal in general.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 23 July 2010
Despite what you think or feel about this album, like Metallica's Master of Puppets, Among the Living is always going to be hailed as the pinnacle, the essence of all Anthrax is. And it's kind of true (if a little insulting), despite the fact that their best album lay a few years away. But Among the Living is a truly powerful and essential album.
The title track is an astounding monster that is possibly one of the best tracks they've produced. 'Caught in a Mosh' is a thrash classic, and very punky. 'I Am the Law'. What can I say? Judge Dredd. Chunky riffs. Job done. 'Efilnikufesin' - another thrash classic. 'Skeletons in the Closet' is not quite as good but only by a hair. 'Indians' is one of my personal favourites. Catchy, riffy and heavy. As is 'One World' and 'ADI' - the latter being a huge behemoth of a track that should get more recognition. The closer is just the best closer of a thrash album ever - bar perhaps a couple from Metallica(!).
It's not just great, it's wordlosingly great.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 11 November 2000
Arguably Anthrax's greatest moment - this album spits and snarls its way into your brain leaving you screaming,chanting and moshing your way from one unforgettable track to the next.Breakneck speeds from both guitar and rhythm sections never waver and the sheer musicianship of the band shines through.'Caught in a mosh' just about says it all.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 14 July 2007
I remember buying this album along with Slayer's Seasons in the Abyss in the summer last year. I had decided to boost my collection of thrash metal with these two albums and I listend to them almost non-stop on my summer holiday in Italy. I thought that both albums were great but I slightly preferred this one. Even though I have bought scores of cds since then I still hold this one in very high regard.
Among the living contains alot of sharp, forceful riffs from guitarist Scoot Ian and, true to the thrash metal stlye, very fast tempos. There are also lots of killer tempo changes and guitar solos to make the songs even more interesting.
Anthrax also ensured that their music was still fairly original. Joey Belladonna actually sings well on this album whereas so many thrash metal singers just shout. His voice helped Antrax create an original sound. The album also has a hardcore punk influence, noticably in the shout-along choruses, which helps mark it out from many other thrash records. It is also refreshing that the band weren't taking things too seriously here. While it is a heavy album with all those crunching riffs and the typical thrash metal speed, the album never sounds particularly dark and is never falls short of just being extremely enjoyable. The lyrics also help give the band a fairly original sound. A skeleton in the closet (one of my faves) and the title track are both based on Stephen King books, I am the law is a tribute to Judge Dredd and Efilnikufesin (N.F.L) is about the comedian John Belushi and his death. There are also some more political lyrics in One world and Indians, while Imitation of Life is an attack on all the fake glam metal bands of the 80's.
So there you have it, a classic thrash record. It really packs a punch with its ferocious brand of thrash metal, that has Antrax's original style written all over it. It is the most consistent thing they ever realeased too. My favourite songs are I am the law, A skeleton in the closet, Indians and the mosh pit classic Caught in a mosh. The album never gets repetitive and each song has a slightly different feel or structure to it. You really ought to buy this album.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 10 January 2013
After my original copy of this album was lent to a "friend" and never returned, I got round to buying this deluxe edition of Among the Living.
So the album. Among the Living is regarded as Anthrax's top album, and one of the best thrash albums of all time. And it's not hard to hear why. Full of blazing riffs and great lyrics, it also has some cross-over appeal due to the fun nature of this album. Even non-thrash fans [like my sister] like Anthrax because of this. They are far and above the most melodic of the thrash bands, crafting songs that straddle the line between thrash fury and party-rock anthems. This can be largely attributed to Joey Belladona's vocals; coming very much from a more Rock background as opposed to a metal vocalist. This gives his voice some great flexibility. Unlike many other thrash bands, Anthrax make me want to jump around in my living room when I put this album on, theirs so much energy to this album and the sing along hardcore-punk choruses are brilliant.
Every track on the album is a mini-masterpiece. The title track, Indians, Caught in a Mosh, EFILNIKUFESIN (N.F.L) and of course the mighty I Am the Law are staple parts of the Anthrax live set. Loud, fun and heavy this is an essential album for any metal fan, and a great place for people interested in metal to start out with.
The bonus tracks on this deluxe edition are nothing special, a few demos and some live tracks. The production on this edition is also excellent, really bringing the songs to life. But the real gem of this edition is the Live DVD. Shot in 1987 when this album was originally released, it showcases the Anthrax live show in towering form. If watching this DVD doesn't make you want to jump around and mosh like a lunatic, you have no soul.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 20 May 2010
I love this album , one of the best anthrax album when i know it's in deluxe edition , i'm looking track list and there is bonus track and dvd ...wow !! the sound in disc one or cd is very great much better from the original album and dvd is some kind of bootlegs picture not perfect but sound is great . overall it's still the best album and anthrax fans must have .
on 30 May 2008
This album is worth 4 stars easily for the standout tracks, which raised Anthrax above many of the thrash bands of the day. The album came out when people were buzzing about 'Thrash' and Metallica and Anthrax graced the cover of Kerrang. There were a few big bands, some harder ones, and some serious rubbish, but Anthrax were different enough to stand out.
Joey Belladonna's vox were one of the things that did this, his style being more rock based and more flexible than many bands of the time(Metallica, Megadeth, Kreator, Exodus, Suicidal Tendencies to name just a few), but the band still sounded harder than than the hair-bands. The playing is as tight as a Gnat's chuff, with some fantastic metal\punk drumming from Charlie Benante (who always blew Lars Ulrich off the riser), Scott Ian's rythm guitar and Frank Bello's bass chug and stomp with clenched teeth and Dan Spitz's guitar breaks are slick and not too overpowering.
More than that, the band wrote *songs*, not just riffs, so where other thrash bands forgot about things like proper choruses, we find them in fine singalong form here. There are a few less than great songs (Skeletons, ADI) but there are also some gems; Iam The Law, Indians (one of the greatest mosh breakdowns ever?!), Caught In a Mosh, EFILNIKUFESIN make this an album still worth buying.
It also has that Anthrax freshness (ahhhhhhh) that came from the band's humour and ability to laugh at themselves...great stuff. I stick this album on and it makes me feel 17 again!!
on 21 October 2007
Among the living is my personal favorite Anthrax full length. In fact, I will be so brave as to say it's in the top 5 thrash albums of all time. Previous output, 'Spreading the Disease', was coming on nicley, hinting at what they would be fully capable of given the right budget and time to mature.
Among the Living is a landmark album in the world of not only thrash metal, but metal in general. One of the few albums where the music media have got it right about blending musical styles, in this case thrash and NY Hardcore. The music is very aggressive skater style thrash, but the attitude and mob choruses scream hardcore.
If 'Spreading the Disease' was the appatiser, then ATL was the full on seven course banquet. Rivalling all their major peers, that being Metallica, Slayer, Megadeth and lets be fair to them, Testament and Exodus too, ATL has soul, where 'Reign in Blood', is a less refined(but still mind bending success) opposite to Anthrax's finest momment.
The album's opener, has that classic scything guitar of Scott Ian and Dan Spitz starting with a repeated riff, that sits back on a medium paced drum beat, that after some very 'hardcore' stop starts unleashes into some of the coolist 80's thrash you'll ever hear.
'Caught in a Mosh' (Belladonna gives an amazing "Noo Yawk" performance on this track), 'I am the Law', with its light hearted look at Judge Dredd, sum up the simpler thrashy part of the album. After that, the songs take on a more complex structure, with lyrics that reflect a band trying to mature and expand their material. You'll have to just to listen to it to see what those lyrics contain.
Anthrax came of age on this album, with every member of the band putting in amazing performances.
"Cold Sweat, my fists are clenching"... Exactly !!!!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 27 March 2014
I waited in line in the rain for this in a a pair of f****n Bermuda shorts for Christs sake and as soon as it hit the turntable all the knee trembling disappeared and my head began to shake and my baseball boots stomped around my Sam fox covered bedroom you can't buy memories like that.this record is a wall of noise brilliant from start to end,I saw the tour too and loads of other times ,great band ,great era makes me feel a bit sad really probably cos most stuff after the eighties were pretty pisspoor thank god for metal.