Obviously, Anthrax's Anthrology: No Hit Wonders 1985-1991 isn't comprehensive. It draws exclusively from the Joey Belladonna era and ignores John Bush, not to mention Dan Lilker, meaning it's flawed like the five other band retrospectives out there. Still, the lineup of Belladonna, Ian, Benante, Bello, and Spitz marks the creative zenith when Anthrax helped mold thrash/speed metal and willed rap-rock into its frustrated existence. ("Bring the Noise" birthed Limp Bizkit, but you can't blame Anthrax and Public Enemy for that.) Anthrology is released in conjunction with a reunion of that lineup, as well as a series of live dates and the obligatory live album/DVD chronicle. The two-disc, 30-song set is fully remastered and includes a considerable amount of material from each of four records Anthrax released during the era. It's kicked off with 1985's Spreading the Disease -- "A.I.R.," "Lone Justice," "Madhouse," "Enemy," "Armed and Dangerous," "Medusa," and "Gung Ho." Then it's the classic Among the Living material, from the title track and "Caught in a Mosh" to the Judge Dredd tribute "I Am the Law" and the righteous "Indians." Disc one ends with the uncensored version of rap-metal progenitor "I'm the Man," still hilarious and pretty damn bold after all these years. Anthrology's second disc includes two versions of State of Euphoria's "Antisocial" -- in English and French -- as well as "Make Me Laugh" and "Be All, End All." Persistence of Time is represented by "Time," "Belly of the Beast," "Keep It in the Family," and Anthrax's frenzied, elastic Joe Jackson cover, "Got the Time," among a few others. The set culminates in the PE collaboration "Bring the Noise," the influential song that first appeared on Attack of the Killer B's in 1991, when Fred Durst was still a tattoo artist in Jacksonville, FL.
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AllMusic Review by Johnny Loftus
Track Listing - Disc 1
Track Listing - Disc 2
feat: Public Enemy