John Bush: Songs on Anthrax’s ‘The Greater of Two Evils’ Didn’t Need to Be Re-Recorded
When it comes to bands re-recording classic songs or even entire albums, it tends to divide fans. Sometimes the original lineup is still intact, other times bands showcase their new singer on old material or just flat out give an album a more updated sound. Current Armored Saint and former Anthrax singer John Bush has expressed his dissatisfaction with this in a new interview.
Speaking with Sleaze Roxx, the singer discussed the early Armored Saint years, reflecting on their first three albums. He used this as a jumping off point to call out bands who have re-recorded classic material, stating, "It’s weird to me when bands go back and re-record songs and albums. It’s like they’re trying to right a wrong. To me, it’s like who cares? When we made March of the Saint, records were made and sounded like that sounds. Could we have made a better sounding record now? Of course we could have. Why would we do that? It doesn’t matter. As an old schooler, I’d be like 'I don’t like it as much, I don’t like it as much!'"
He then turned his attention to Whitesnake's latest release, The Purple Album, which featured "re-imagined" versions of MK III and MK IV era Deep Purple material from when David Coverdale fronted the legendary rock outfit. He slammed this effort, exclaiming, "Why? For starters, it isn’t [Ritchie] Blackmore playing on it. I don’t care who is in the band. Ritchie Blackmore has his own style of playing. It’s unique. Ian Paice also has his own style of play. I don’t know. I mean even his voice sounds way different than it did then. I’m not saying it’s better or worse. It’s just different. I’d like to hear it live with Whitesnake, that’s great. To just re-do a bunch of stuff; I just don’t see the point. I don’t like it."
"Going back and trying to recreate what you did 25 years earlier in a different studio with a different mindset? Sometimes even different players? I just don’t see the point," he concluded. This opened the door for discussion about Anthrax's The Greater of Two Evils.
Bush fronted Anthrax for a combined 14 years, recording four studio albums as well as the aforementioned The Greater of Two Evils. The latter is a compilation that was recorded live in the studio with Bush singing material strictly from the five albums that preceded his entry into the thrash act.
"When I recorded The Greater Of Two Evils — ironically enough — it wasn’t too long there after that I left the band," Bush began, continuing, "In all honesty, knowing what I know now, I wouldn’t have done it. The truth of the matter — when I sang those songs live, they were my muse and I gave them all the love I could and I enjoyed performing them. In retrospect, they didn’t need to be re-recorded."
Armored Saint's latest album, Win Hands Down, was released in June of 2015 and brought new classics in the title track, "Mess" and "An Exercise in Debauchery." The band will be heading out on a short West Coast run with Metal Church before venturing off to Europe. The trek starts on June 3 and a list of dates can be found here.
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