In the midst of its national tour in support of Slayer, East Coast thrash legends, Anthrax dropped into the Revolution Concert House and Events Center in Boise, Idaho this week for a headline date with Bay Area thrashers Death Angel. The New York-based metal icons are touring support of their latest release, For All Kings which is already considered a contender for many year-end “best of” lists. The album, the band’s eleventh studio effort, has already spawned three heavy weight anthems in “Evil Twin,” “Monster at the End,” and “Breathing Lightning.” Likewise, Death Angel recently released its eighth studio album, The Evil Divide this spring.
The Boise show marked one of several add on dates on the current tour allowing Anthrax and Death Angel to perform in extra cities on off days from the Slayer tour. Such dates allow both bands to play extended sets. Prior to the show, Anthrax did a special acoustic X-Session for local radio station 100.3 The X.
Death Angel opened their set with the classic track title track from the band’s seminal debut album The Ultra-Violence and followed it up with “Evil Priest” from the same 1987 record. The crowd immediately parted to form a circle pit in front of the stage. Vocalist Mark Osegueda encouraged and incited the crowd. Much of Death Angel’s 10-song set focused on their more recent material, including three tracks; “Lost,” “Father of Lies,” and “Moth” from The Evil Divide. Drummer Will Carroll and bassist Damien Sisson powered the band throughout the set, while guitarists Rob Cavestany and Ted Aguilar ignited their fretboards with muscular riffs and fiery solos. Other tracks performed included “Claws in So Deep,” “Left for Dead,” and “Thrown to the Wolves.”
With the crowd already whipped into a frenzy, Anthrax took the stage and kicked off their 14-song set with two tracks from For All Kings, “You Gotta Believe” and “Monster at the End”. The veteran rockers unleashed on the crowd in an energetic frenzy as they dialed in a classic hits like “Caught in a Mosh,” Madhouse,” “Medusa,” “Fight ‘em Till You Can’t,” “Antisocial,” and “Got the Time”. Frontman Joey Belladonna proved he has only gotten better over time, and guitarist Scott Ian moved about like a maniacal teen performing his first show. Drummer Charlie Benante and his nephew, bassist Frankie Bello were locked in perfect rhythmic balance throughout. New guitarist Jonathan Donais is a perfect fit for the band, and he showed off his skills on every song including deeper cuts like “Efilnikufesin (N.F.L.),” “Be All, End All,” and the band’s cover of the Stormtroopers of Death classic, “March of the S.O.D.” Anthrax paid tribute to their heroes Ronnie James Dio and Dimebag Darrell Abbott on “In the End” from their 2011 Worship Music album. They closed the night out in bombastic fashion on the epic track “Breathing Lightning” followed by their iconic hit, “Indians.”
Both bands, as well as local openers Vault 7, held the Boise crowd enthralled all evening. The Revolution was packed, and it seemed every metalhead in the Treasure Valley was in attendance. Anthrax and Death Angel served up one of the year’s best shows, and every fan left with a sore neck and a permanent grin.
Photographer Katarzyna Cepek was on hand to capture all the action.