Among the Living is the third studio album by American thrash metal band Anthrax. It was released on March 22, 1987, by Megaforce Records in the US and by Island Records in the rest of the world. The album is dedicated to Cliff Burton of Metallica, who died in a bus accident six months before its release while on tour with Anthrax as the opening act. Veteran engineer Eddie Kramer, at his first venture with a thrash metal act, co-produced the album. Recording proceeded smoothly and the band was enthusiastic, but different visions for the sound of the final release created contrasts between Anthrax and the producer during the mixing at Compass Point Studios in the Bahamas. Ultimately, Anthrax succeeded in maintaining the aggressive dry sound and fast rhythms of the original recordings, enriched by often-humorous lyrics dealing with disparate subjects. Anthrax members often described the album as their major breakthrough, as it catapulted the band from being a small club attraction to arena and stadium stars. Critics acclaimed the album and promoted the band among the Big Four of Thrash Metal elite. The band's second Gold record, Among the Living was certified Gold by the RIAA on July 31, 1990.Wikipedia
I'd been holding off listening to this album for a while because I was sure I wouldn't like it. And while it's surely not my style of music, we've listened to so many worse albums in the interim that I don't think I can just damn it with one star. Were this a 10 star system, I'd probably give it a 2 - MAYBE a 3. But in this 5 star system, I've got to go with a 2, because it's not nearly as bad a some of the albums that have been virtually unlistenable. So cheers to Anthrax. You've earned this 2 by not sucking as much as others!!
Rips so hard I want to black out on Bud Light and worship Satan
Reminded me a lot of a slightly worse Metallica
“Among the Living” by Anthrax (1987) Never heard this album, nor anything by Anthrax, as far as I know. Since I’m not very familiar with the thrash genre, these comments will be limited in context. The musical settings are appropriately harsh and foreboding, evoking the rage of the generation that had had just about enough of Ronald Reagan. High energy and aggressive beats. Makes me want to just sit back and listen. A little Anthrax in the morning! Very entertaining, with plenty of variety in tempos (mostly fast) and rhythms (mostly driving) with extremely abrupt turns and shifts. No toe-tapping to this music. The only dancing one could do to these rhythms would be in a mosh pit. Drums and bass very disciplined, and excellent lead guitar colorings. Nice synchronization of rhythm guitar and bass. Drum work displays significant virtuosity; very well rehearsed. Overall, the band is talented, consistently able to carry the creative motivation of each song to its intended effect. Excellent technical production. Drums recorded with good separation and depth. Good mix. Lead vocals are suitable for the genre, a little weak on diction. Backing vocals are crisp, with good pitch control and range. “I Am the Law” is appealing, intentionally derivative of the artistic theme of the Judge Dredd character from “2000ad”. Musically and lyrically it captures the milieu. “N.F.L.” is a generationally appropriate homage to the life and death of John Belushi. Kind of a “thrashumentary”—a fitting tribute. I think Belushi would have liked it, and then paid tribute in return by satirizing it. The intro to “Medley: A.D.I./Horror of It All” all is a refreshing variation in the album’s sound texture, before jolting back into the thrash style. Nice work on acoustic twelve string. The Anthrax approach to musical and lyrical composition seems to be “commentary” on well-chosen cultural events and the common themes of rebellion and “anti-establishment” protest. But they don’t express it as well as predecessors Bob Dylan, Stephen Stills, Joni Mitchell, etc. Lacking subtlety and nuance in its moral judgments, Anthrax would seem somewhat immature to more thoughtful adolescents and young adults, who might be put off by the denunciatory and condescending sermonizing. “Imitation of Life” is a great example of this shortcoming, but it runs throughout the album. Overall, a good album, but not on par with Black Sabbath or Metallica. I liked listening to it. 3/5
The brutal rhythm guitar work of Scott Ian and the explosive drumming of Charlie Benante relentlessly push the songs along while still maintaining a solid groove, and more than make up for some lyrical awkwardness. Among the Living remains arguably Anthrax's foremost achievement.
A thrash classic. I feel like Anthrax gets a lot of disrespect; some say they shouldnt be considered one of the big 4 of the genre. I disagree (though a good case can be made for Testament in their place, but that's not important) they put out a lot of solid albums and this is the best of them all. It's a lot of fun.
Though I don’t necessarily mind Thrash, it’s hardly my thing; but this was surprisingly catchy and almost punk-ish at times.
Fucking metal. Great rhythms and riff. It's just powers through, every track with driving energy. My only complaint (and why I'm not giving it 5 stars) is that it does lack variety.
An already biased opinion as a metal head! The Metallica homages are evident. Crisp, dry drums that are synonymous with thrash metal hammer away with barely intelligable lyrics encourage head banging. A properly adjusted equaliser makes more difference than it has rights to in order to elevate the sound.
One of the prime albums in Thrash and helped establish Anthrax as a force to be reckoned with in 4 way of ‘best thrash band’
I’ve always be a fan of Slayer and also partially to early Metallica. I’ve struggled to find a place for Anthrax in my mind - they are ever present in the era but I failed to hear a memorable album until this one. It starts wonderfully with thrash banger after banger - then it evens out to a solid album. Feels like the last two tracks have been forced on and could have done without them. I also went and listened to Reign in Blood, Master of Puppets and Kill ‘em all to place this album in that hall of fame and it fits nicely trailing closely behind the other behemoths. All in all a solid trash album
I AM THE LAW
Had a teacher who was a roadie for anthrax
Damn I liked this. I'm actually shocked. For me this is closer to Never Mind the Bollocks then it is to Paranoid, which I did not expect. The guitar histrionics tend to be short blasts then long drawn out wank-fests. 3 🌟
Can tell you that it’s more fun listening to Anthrax, than being infected by it.
Too much head banging
Today is my birthday. I woke up in anticipation. Would my birthday album be one of my all-time favorite classics, maybe something by Pink Floyd, The Beatles, or The Velvet Underground? Or would I be thrilled to discover some masterpiece that I wasn't already familiar with? No, it turns out to be this garbage. Ugh. This is awful. My birthday is ruined! 1 star.
Yes yes yes
Como todo el trash metal, me pareció chistoso, pero he de admitir que sí termina haciendome querer regar sangre por todas partes XD y convertirme en un no-muerto sádico. Nunca había escuchado un disco de estos abuelos del trash, fue una buena experiencia aunque este subgenero de plano no creo que entre a mis playlists de metal, supongo por esa insistencia en hacer un sonido sucio que no es realmente sucio remanente del punk pesadon que no me convence. Pero en fin, divertidín disco. Mood: Que llueva la sangre.
Klassieker onder de metal-albums. Duidelijk te merken dat deze band inspiratie was voor vele recentere groepen. Volume op 11 en genieten!
In another life, Anthrax would have easily been the top of the Big 4 for me. I just love their humor so much. Metallica only pulls on nostalgia and showmanship to win.
Probably my least favorite of the Big Four, but goddamn if it ain’t still a masterpiece that they got here. Hats off to the drums and rhythm guitar in particular; they elevated this to a 5 for me.
I played the heck out of this album back in middle school and high school. It still rocks!
One of those albums that I've heard more times than I've had hot dinners. Covered most of it live at some point, it's a rhythm guitarist's dream. Scott and Charlie really knew what they were doing here. I prefer spreading the disease but both are 5/5 albums anyway.
Heavy metal for the win
Great album no filler just great thrash
Used to love a bunch of these songs when I had a metal phase and they still hold up for me
This is probably the best thrash metal album I’ve heard.
Hell yes!! Still as good as when it came out.
Back in 1987, Metal was not my thing and I resented the Goth bands who were introducing Metal influences... But I heard 'Indians' and liked it so much I bought the single, and then the 'Among The Living' album. And finally I'd found some Metal that I liked. 36 years on I still like it very much.
the last half of this album goes hard as hell
Still prefer John Bush 🤘
Isn't what I would usually listen to, but that might have to change now. Really fantastic.
Tasty thrash metal treat if you need a punch in the face, and today I needed one. Guitarist Scott Ian described this album as... “It really felt like we were being guided by the power of metal and it was out of our hands. Satan was channeling his will through us and we couldn’t help but succeed.”
A esos mens los vi una vez que cubría un festival de metal para una marca que te vende derechos sobre la música del mundo por 100 pesos. Estuvo verguísima. Algo que se olvida un poco es que el thrash fue un tipo de música pop. Esta mierda vendía millones de discos. Anthrax me gusta porque son divertidos. Gente divertida con riffs fenomenales. Tienen una onda ahí callejera muy de Nueva York, muy italiana-judía que me encanta, me recuerda al NYHC en ese aspecto.
An absolute thrash/NYHC classic
I've never been a fan of thrash metal. I tried listening to Slayer and Anthrax as a teenager, but didn't really get it and went back to punk music. However, I'm amazed I didn't enjoy Anthrax at least, since this album is basically as close to hardcore punk as metal gets. I like it. It's tightly controlled, fast and melodic. The singer sounds good. It's fun, but without becoming full-blown cheesy nonsense. My only complaint is the shouted gang vocals, which sounded dumb in NYHC punk and still sound dumb here. 4/5 - maybe even a 4.5.
Viel besser als gedacht. Teilweise richtig kluger Pop aber auch darüber hinaus
Yeah, its kinda good. I honestly like Anthrax better than Iron Maiden.
Good for the Genre. I enjoyed it more than expected. I would gladly listen again.
Antes eu considerava que não precisar escutar mais opções de metal, assim perdia riffs fundamentais como do Anthrax
It thrashes, which is what it set out to do.
Previously, I had dismissed Anthrax as bog standard metal but that was refreshingly progressive.
I feel like most of these songs are pretty good. Actually love the more punk approach to thrash on this thing. With that being said, this album is very one dimensional. Especially after a couple of listens, this wears it down a fair bit. One of the few acts I'd rather listen to songs instead of an album. Still I can' t be to critical of this.
Better than expected.
Un dels grans clàssics del thrash, merescudament. La banda en plena eclosió d'adrenalina i inspiració, amb uns primers sis temes que són sis clàssics. És el més a prop que van ser d'apropar-se a les grans obres dels altres 4 grans noms del génere
Oh shit man you guys made me like a metal album. There's a lot of DNA here for later pop-punk especially. I love the energy and the fact that you can actually hear the vocals
The people's thrash. Out of the Big 4, Anthrax was the most relatable. Contrast with hair metal bands, they wore t-shirts and shorts. Vocal approach reminiscent of hardcore, this was the gateway album for punk fans into metal. And their lyrical subject? Not about politics or Cthulhu. Just looking at the first 3: "Among the Living" is based on Stephen King's The Stand, "Caught in a Mosh" screams rebel, "I am the Law" is about the comic character Judge Dredd... these are nerdy subjects appealing to your average angsty teen. There's humor and energy in every track, Scott Ian and Joey Belladonna giving a hell of a performance. Among the Living was their breakthrough album and the most representative of 80s thrash. Their next album would stray further into skate punk territory. I know them mostly for their collab with Public Enemy, so hearing them for themselves is pretty exciting, and they exceed expectations. Out of the four, Anthrax was always the outcast for not having the insanity or speed of the other three, but I consider them to be just as solid and have just as much personality. The mixing is well done. You can hear everyone well, and they all play well. Belladonna's voice is crisp, and the back vocals serve their purpose. The solos are a bit forgettable, and there's a couple weak tracks later in the album. They usually make up for their lyrics and Ian's and Belladonna's performances. But no track felt too long, and with 9 tracks I fully enjoyed the ride.
I like Anthrax. Lots of energy and good for an occasional laugh. I was also a big Stephen King fan back then, especially The Stand. Among the Living is peak Anthrax. Great cover art, too.
I always gave Anthrax a wide berth for one reason or the other. But this album definitely showed why they were considered part of the Big 4 in Thrash Metal.
Out of the thrash scene, Anthrax was one of the two bands I had time for, the other one being Suicidal Tendencies. At the time I didn't know exactly why; today I can explain that that relates to the many elements that they incorporate into their sound, from NYHC to early rap. There really is a form of richness and subtlety to their approach that goes far beyond 80s metal. The run of albums from Spreading The Disease to Persistence Of Time is absolutely brilliant, with Among The Living being their peak. Tons of riffage and mental drumming, changes in tempo and chord progressions that are simply breathtaking, with lyrics that swing from social matters to pop culture references, and the ability to not take themselves too seriously, everything is in the right place for the listener to engage in an interesting listening experience all while having fun. Not only their musical choices were courageous at the time, but the fact that by the next album they would showcase a skate shoes, coloured bermuda, and white t-shirts style (as opposed to the all black with leather jacket that was mandatory for a metal band) makes Anthrax the most thrilling band of the era.
Loved it. bit of a cookie cutter sound to them these days, but it's not the 80s anymore is it?
NFA. Nice Fukin Album.
not my usual cup of tea but they really said “land back” and i respect that
Not a metal fan but this opened my eyes to the genre in a big way
I listened to Metallica right before this album so it might have influenced my relatively high score
Some great classic thrash on here. Could feel a bit samey at times, but went hard throughout.
It's at the fun end of thrash, rather than the 'woo I'm dark and edgy" end and is a lot more enjoyable for it. It'll probably never be my favourite style of music, but I enjoyed this, in that it passed by faster than its 40 minute length, and made me smile at least twice!
Hilarious. Not amazing, but hilarious. And sometimes thats enough to make it great. 4/5
Anthrax was never really my thing, but you've got to respect the high level of musicianship that went into this record. Anthrax really are a tight machine of a band. There is no fat in this music, not a single unnecessary note. I would also add that Anthrax is pretty cool because they straddle the line between punk and metal better than just about any band. That's a hard balance to maintain, and they've pretty much perfected it. Fave Songs: Indians, One World, Caught in a Mosh, Among the Living, Efilnikufesin (N.F.L.)
Good ol‘ Anthrax <3
I never liked Anthrax growing up, but recently I've heard some that were pretty good. I did enjoy this album for the most part.
Relentless and punk and grand
Better than I thought
Beefy and aggressive, exactly what you want. Not usually my bag but I missed it when it was over. Excellent for anxty cycle to work
Proper trash metal. Good stuff!! Saved songs: I Am The Law, Efilnikufesin (N.F.L.),Medley: A.D.I. / Horror Of It All, Imitation Of Life
I'm not much of a thrash guy, and I don't think that this album will make me a thrash guy, but it was high-octane fun.
I've been listening to this record all day long. It's driven me to quite an interesting mental state. For the last 30 minutes I've been furiously scratching my scrotum. It's now bleeding and I feel okay with it. It's nice, you know? Like a comfortable pair of slippers or an unknown tongue in your ear. My eyes are twitching and I've clamped my anus wide open. A girl from over the road is inserting Wotsits into it via a funnel as I squeal and ask for more. She's shy and unassuming, but I think she might be a little bit confused about what's happening here. I'll pay her the usual rate and hope she doesn't spill all the details to my chums at the country club. Some of those guys are really straight laced and dislike some of my silly ways. I wish them well and hold no grudges, but if any of them made fun of me I would slice theirs dicks off and wear them as a skirt.
Thrash-metal de las primeras épocas. Ritmos endiablados, guitarras afiladas y voz con carácter. Algunos temas, un tanto parecidos entre sí
I didn't really listen to Anthrax until they released Bring the Noise with PE. Which is interesting because I enjoyed the Anthrax side project S.O.D. Amoung the Living is great model glue sniffing thrash. So you are going to love it or hate it. Only minus is even though it is a single, Indians sounds dated and out of place on the album
Solid thrash record. Probably my favorite anthrax album.
4 Look, I’ve never claimed to be the biggest metal fan - as of this writing my Summary page on this site even has it listed as one of my least favorite genres. It’s just never been one that’s spoken to me much, and I just don’t think there are a ton of associated albums I would rate highly (see: Pantera). Now, that all being said, this is one of those exceptions. When it comes to the “Big Four” of metal (Metallica, Slayer, Megadeth, Anthrax), I’m fully in Anthrax’s corner. I’m not even entirely sure why that is - I can admit they don’t sound drastically different from the others, but there’s something about Joey Belladonna’s contrastingly clean high-pitched vocals and the backing chants that really set the band apart for me. And then there’s the speed of the music - the band rips so hard so fast that I can’t be convinced that there isn’t at least a degree of punk influence in there. Sure, it can be pretty same-y, but the thrash nature makes the album (and individual songs) feel so much shorter than they are. It’s just one rapid-fire flash of moshable material after another, without any hint of slowing down. Speaking of, Caught in a Mosh is not only a highlight of the album and an exemplification of all things that make this band work, but probably one of the best tunes to ever come out of the genre. It’s also a personal favorite of mine to listen to while working out - whenever my Spotify shuffles it in, I know I’m about to absolutely crush my next set (sorry if too bro-y, but if you find yourself at the gym I recommend tossing it in in the queue). Among metal’s best for me, but it might just be because of my punk background. Regardless, I enjoyed quite a bit.
Like a slightly worse Metallica
I didnt expect to enjoy this at all, but honestly it surprised me. Its incredibly energetic, and unlike on other metal albums that Ive listened to (and hardcore punk), the speed didnt bother me as much on this one.
Spotify. Not my thing.
Mörk Borg af
Heavy Drums and heavy guitars put together with top production quality. Has many pop reference and is a tribute to Cliff Burton. It's definitely a change of pace for this list. Although technically interesting many of the songs blend together.
Doesn’t get any more metal
great guitar and drums but the singing had little musicality or interesting meaning
Better than expected
I feel like the farther away I get from this period of heavy metal, the worse I assume it will be. There's actually a decent musical element to this, which I don't hate. Pretty good for a metal album.
Like most thrash I can appreciate the technical skill, and in this album the lyrics have more variety and invention than the run of the mill, but the style just doesn't do anything for me, and a fair bit of it felt awfully monotonous, though there were some standouts.
Probably translates well to a live show, attracting longtime following fans. A bit too clinical and clean to begin with, but losses up and gets funner as the album goes on. really like the music to ‘I am the Law’, but vocals are pretty annoying
Ya me di cuenta de que el hard rock y el metal no me provocan tantas emociones. No me disgusta, pero escucho los discos como ruido de fondo, sin tanta atención. Creo que siento que vale más la pena para un concierto, pero no me motiva a escucharlos a menudo o cotidianamente. Se diría, que no es para mí. En ese espíritu, escuché Among the Living sin detenerme en minucias, pero logré destacar dos canciones "I Am The Law" e "Indians". El medley también tiene partes muy padres. 7/10
I was never super into Anthrax. Not a huge fan of Joey Belladonna's vocals...but this is still a pretty classic album.
Recognized some songs, used to like anthrax a lot but not really my vibe anymore. Good for what it is
This was fine - some good riffs, production is a little light.