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Customer reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
27


on 23 July 2010
This is where Anthrax truly became a 'thrash' outfit. Their previous album was a lot of fun and a great heavy rock record but as soon as 'A.I.R' kicks in with the, now trademark, Anthrax riffage it feels like they have finally entered the arena. Ironically, 'Lone Justice' harks back to the first album in terms of composition but it is an awesome track; truly the stirrings of what would become 'I Am The Law' lay therein. 'Madhouse'is a classic chugging monster of a song and a true 'thrax legend. 'Stand or Fall' is a catchy little number. 'The Enemy' and 'Aftershock' are not as close to perfection as what had been before but are not bad. But then 'Armed & Dangerous' fills the air and the fists are pumping again! 'Medusa' is MY classic from this album - I love it. It's not thrashy, it's slow but it's groovy and textured and catchy as hell. ' Gung-Ho' is a fun, fast and very thrashy closer.

The true beginning of a great era for the band. When Joey joined they found the perfect voice for their music. The rest, I suppose, is history.
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on 24 September 2013
back to the roots again. is it middlife crisis? or not? ...not!!! i was missing pure trash and i got it. this is second metal album i ever heard. i wasn't wrong when i was 12 year old...i'm 36 this year and i still love it
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on 11 December 2009
if you are into anthrax and don't have this record then buy it!! for me the 80's anthrax are when they were at there best and this album stands out among all metal of the 80's. from track 1 "a.i.r." it just starts getting you tapping your foot and then by track 3 "mad house" your jumping around. this was the first full length record with joe belladonna on vocals and his voice is strong and clear and melodic,the best singer they ever had (they where bigger than metallica at the time,worst mistake they made when they lost belladonna) this record is a classic metal record with great tracks "medusa" "armed and dangeous" a must for all anthrax fans a must!!
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VINE VOICEon 16 May 2008
After their slightly patchy debut album and a change in personel, Anthrax's secnd album is undeniably a classic of the thrash genre. Most fans will point to 'Among the Living' as the band's defining moment, but it's really hard to find any fault with this 1985 offering, as from the opening moments of 'A.I.R.' the album spews out a seemingly endless collection of killer riffs, while new vocalist Joe Bellandonna's melodic vocals provide numerous catchy choruses. 'Spreading the Disease' ranges from such relatively melodic songs as the insanely catchy 'Medusa' and 'Lone Justice', which at times sounds almost Iron Maiden-ish, to the full on thrash of tracks like 'Gung-Ho' and 'Aftershock'. The band themselves have at times stated a despair at being unable to escape 'Madhouse', but with a song this strong it's not hard to understand why it's in constant demand at gigs. Highlight for me though would probably be 'The Enemy', with the over-processed tribal drum opening givng way to what must rank as one of the greatest thrash metal riffs of all time.

Inevitably a little dated, especially in Bellandonna's clean vocals, but still utterly essential for any thrash metal fans.
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on 8 July 2010
Here we have what I can only describe as an alltime thrash classic from one of the big four of thrash metal - Anthrax.
Anthrax released this masterpiece back in 1985 and is their second full length album after their debut - Fistfull Of Metal.Out go origional bassist Dan Lilker and singer Neil Turbin and in comes new bassist Frank Bello and singer Joey Bellodonna.
The energy this band puts into this album and the wonderful songwriting skills stands out from the off.Joey Bellodonna has one of the very best voices in metal and he proves his worth here with an awsome display,showing that Anthrax had what the other big 4 didn't - a real singer who could reach notes the likes of Hetfield/Mustaine could only dream of.Every song here showcases the bands huge individual talents with superb riffs from Scott Ian/Dan Spitz,exceptional drumming from a young Charlie Bennante(best metal drummer ever in my opinion) and the simply brilliant singing from Joey I described earlier.
There is not one duff track on the album and there is a bit of variety too with the classic fast thrash pace we all expect along with slower paced songs such as Medusa.There are some great intros which steadily build up before the singing starts such as accoustic parts or some fine drumming which gives each song more identity and I promise you they will stick in your head for a long time.Some of the main chorus's are very,very catchy too with Joey's voice reaching some really high notes.Stand out tracks include Madusa,SSC/Stand or Fall,The Enemy and Lone Justice.
Production is what you would expect for a 1985 release and it could do with having a bassier overall sound and is reletively quiet too,something a good sound system can help improve on.An improved remastered version would be nice like they did recently with their follow up album Among The Living.
To some it up then,this is the second best release they ever put out narrowly beaten by the simply awsome Among The Living album.This is 80's thrash metal at its finest and sits nicely next to other classics like Master of Puppets,Ride The Lightning,Reign in Blood,Peace Sells and Among The Living.If you are a fan of thrash you really cannot afford to miss out on this thrash classic!!!!!
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on 6 September 2009
I had never heard anything by Anthrax when i bought this album, and now i'm really into them.
I think this is a must have album if you already like the band or were like me and just getting into them.
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on 16 January 2008
you wanna buy the best anthrax album, then this is it !!
full on `ave it thrash, fast punchy riffs, awesome
if you are an old fan of anthrax and havent listened to this in a while
put it on, it sounds even better now than it did back then !!, weird huh !
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on 2 May 2007
This was the first album I ever bought with my first wage from my first job when I was 14 (and I still actually have the tape!). The album is full-on thrash, fast and energetic. Joey's vocals add a whole new energetic dimension on top of that. The main thing that set Anthrax apart from the rest is their use of melody, and tracks such as Medusa are outstanding pieces of music. If you want to hear the best of 1980's thrash metal (after Metallica's Kill 'Em All) then you wont go wrong with this album.
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on 16 November 2007
Spreading The Disease is the true link between the the old and the new.
From Iron Maiden's twin guitar attack of old, to thrash metals aggressive gallop of new (for 1985 at least!).
Anthrax came to play harder and faster than they did on Debut 'Fistful of Metal', but the NWOBHM influence still permeates throughout this record. Where Megadeth were displaying their wares for the time on 'Killing is My Business...' as more punk influenced heavy metal, Slayer were already detached from their UK influences with the all out thrash of 'Hell Awaits.'
Anthrax, luckily for us, clung to the melodic roots of 80's metal and produced a fine thrashy, but not overly aggresive metal album.
Opener 'A.I.R.' starts with an unforgettable riff, slow to get going, but after a real widdly guitar lead, we get to Joey Belladonna's vocals. This man can sing! If you're not into the whole high pitched wailing, ala Judas Priest/ most german mid 80's speed metal, then you probably ain't gonna be too impressed throughout this album. For those that like vocals you can actually understand, his style is just up your street.
Tracks such as 'Lone Justice', 'The Enemy' & 'Aftershock' all have the relentless double bass drums we have come to expect from Charlie Benante, but they sparingly turn on the real speed that most people associate with "thrash". As I said already, Anthrax were still holding onto some of those older metal values. Even with the super fast thrash strumming of Messers Ian and Spitz, these tracks never really compete with stuff like Metallica's 'Battery' or even Exodus's 'Fabulous Disaster'. Heavy and mid paced is the order of the day here.
The more well known tracks form this platter really impress me.
'Mad House' is so catchy it's rediculous. Bridges, choruses, and brickwall riffing! 'Medusa' is the big pull to cross over fans of both trad metal and thrash, being very "tame" by thrash standards, and even dare I say it, radio friendly?
'Armed & Dangerous' deserves a special mention because it is probably the best track on the album. Some brilliant semi-accoustic guitar to open, Belladonna's crooning vocals building up the momment, then its into some heavier, military style guitar marches, and when you are just about to burst from the pomposity of it all, it lets you have it with some fantastic genere defining thrash !!!!
Closer 'Gung Ho', is the black sheep of the track list, as it seems to be on the wrong album !!! The only "true" thrash song from start to finish, we had to wait until 1987's 'Among The Living' to get a whole album's worth of this aural gold!
This is Anthrax trying to be a serious thrash band, when we all know now that what they wanted to be was a NY skate thrash band with Hardcore overtones. We only had to wait 2 years !!!
An essential album for Anthrax fans, not so essential to those who like their thrash hard and very very fast. But still a classic.
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on 1 April 2010
Got this album as I liked some other Anthrax albums but found it not up to the standard of their other material. I have only listened to it twice all the way through so it may grow on me but it is not as good as Persistence of Time or Among the living. It has the typical Anthrax riffs but the album sounds a bit thin (production wise) and the vocals grow a bit annoying after lstening to the whole album.I found the songs sound better live than on the album.
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