Anthrax, along with Metallica, Slayer, and Megadeth were the 4 bands that converted me into a metalhead in the 80’s. They always seemed to produce consistent headbanging material. However, I was a little concerned that this consistency would be broken when I heard that John Bush would be replacing Joey Belladonna at lead vocals for the 1993 release “The Sound of White Noise.” Once I heard the album, I was concerned no more.
Believe it or not, I instantly preferred Bush’s vocals. Every album that Joey appeared on was solid and consistent and followed the basic headbanging formula. Not that this is a bad thing, but Anthrax never really seemed to stray too far from the norm. John Bush brought a level of maturity with him and “The Sound of White Noise” became their most mature album up to that point.
With this album, Anthrax dared to challenge themselves with more complex song arrangements, much deeper melodies, and more thought provoking lyrics. It’s almost as though Joey was holding them back from expanding out of the thrash box that they were in. Bush’s vocals are tremendous and allow for more powerful choruses and hook lines. Each song is as memorable as the next with plenty of headbanging material to go around. However, songs like Packaged Rebellion and Black Lodge are unlike any previous Anthrax songs, but are just as great. Other high points are Potter’s Field, Hy Pro Glo, Invisible, and Room For One More.
Do I think this is the best Anthrax album? It depends on my mood. If I’m looking for straight up headbanging with killer riffs and pounding drums, I prefer Among The Living. If I’m looking for the entire package, The Sound of White Noise satisfies all of my metal cravings.
As with any review, these are my opinions and not everybody will agree with them which is what makes these reviews so much fun. Enjoy!