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Anthrax’s Charlie Benante Describes Genesis of ‘Worship Music’

Paul Hawthorne, Getty Images

Fans had to practice major patience leading up to the release of Anthrax’s latest album, ‘Worship Music,’ as the album was the band’s first since 2003’s ‘We’ve Come for You All.’ Thankfully, it was worth the wait, and ‘Worship Music’ seamlessly unites the velocity and ferocity of metal with the lightning-fast speed of thrash.

When it comes to the album’s weighty name, Anthrax drummer Charlie Benante says the moniker was something he just stumbled upon one morning.

“The story behind the name is that I fell asleep with the TV on one night and woke up at five in the morning, and there was this show on called, ‘Worship Music,’” he told Modern Drummer. “It was a Sunday morning sermon thing, and a light bulb went off — ‘That’s a great title!’… ”

Benante says the musical vibe of ‘Worship Music’ captures the heart of Anthrax’s past and present. “I never really think of the old material or live in the past, yet there are elements of it in what I write,” he said. “I still write songs on the same guitar that I did back in the day. I say that that guitar is magic, because there are just so many songs in it, but if I feel that I’m writing something that sounds dated, it probably won’t last.

“I’m sure there are bands that are trying to relive a record that brought them acclaim and trying to write that record over and over again. But there are also bands that just have a certain sound, like AC/DC or the Ramones. You sometimes have to just let a song be what it wants to be, and not try to rewrite it or cut it to fit what you think it should be.”

Benante, apparently, is also a Foo Fighters fan.

“Anything can inspire me [to write music],” he said. “Movies, music…the other night I went to see the Foo Fighters at a small club, and that was inspiring. I came home, set up my digital recorder, started playing guitar, and just let it go. Watching another band have a great show—that always triggers my creative energy.”

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