MRI 469 Fistful of Metal
Produced by Carl Canedy
Released on January 1984
no chart information
Find it at GEMM
MRI 469 cover
[high resolution photo]

O pus uno: the heavy metal kids who grew up on Priest strap some turbo rockets on the beast and rip metal a new asphalt. This is what minor labels are all about: exposing the underground music that can’t be contained. But as much as you’d like to say that Anthrax was destined for greatness from the get-go, it’s not evident on Fistful of Metal. There’s a lot of good, middle-tier metal on here: “Anthrax,” “Subjugator,” “Metal Thrashing Mad.” But you’d have to be a fine connoisseur of the stuff to taste more than typical Type O blood in it. Much as Rush drank a little too deeply from the fount of Led Zeppelin at first, Anthrax here is something of a poor man’s Priest. You’ve got the twin guitar attacks, the screeching vocals (Neil’s turban’s on too tight) and the violent imagery (“Death From Above,” “Soldiers of Metal,” “Deathrider”). The difference is that Priest belonged to a bygone era (classic rock) where Anthrax belonged to the future (punk rock). Anthrax actually began to shape that future with Spreading The Disease and especially Among The Living, but not here. Fistful of Metal is Anthrax emerging from its chrysalis, part of the old caterpillar still sticking to it: bassist Dan Lilker, X-vocalist Jason Rosenfeld and Y-not-sack Neil Turbin too. What makes it work is the audacity of the music and the confidence that they were onto something big. Metal thrashing mad is exactly what they are, which is fine except that the halls of metal were quickly packing with would-be beserkers. It wasn’t until Anthrax stepped out of that hall that they brought some fresh air into the metal movement. I’d file Fistful alongside the pre-classic lineup proving grounds of Rush (the album), Yes (also the album), Trespass et al. Certainly not the first Anthrax album you need to buy, probably not the last, and worth owning just so you can leave the cover on your coffee table.

MRI 469 back cover
MRI 469 back cover


  1. DEATHRIDER    (Dan Lilker/Jason Rosenfeld/Neil Turbin/Dan Spitz/Charlie Benante)    3:30
  2. METAL THRASHING MAD    (Dan Lilker/Jason Rosenfeld/Neil Turbin/Dan Spitz/Charlie Benante)    2:39
  3. I'M EIGHTEEN    (Michael Bruce/Alice Cooper/Dennis Dunaway/Neal Smith/Glen Buxton)    4:02
  4. PANIC    (Dan Lilker/Jason Rosenfeld/Neil Turbin)    3:58
  5. SUBJUGATOR    (Dan Lilker/Jason Rosenfeld/Neil Turbin/Dan Spitz/Charlie Benante)    4:38
  6. SOLDIERS OF METAL    (Dan Lilker/Jason Rosenfeld/Neil Turbin)    2:55
  7. DEATH FROM ABOVE    (Jason Rosenfeld/Neil Turbin/Dan Spitz)    5:06
  8. ANTHRAX    (Dan Lilker/Jason Rosenfeld/Neil Turbin)    3:24
  9. ACROSS THE RIVER    (Dan Lilker/Jason Rosenfeld)    1:26
  10. HOWLING FURIES    (Dan Lilker/Jason Rosenfeld)    3:55


SCOTT IAN -- rhythm & wang guitar
DAN LILKER -- bass guitar
DAN SPITZ -- lead guitar
NEIL TURBIN -- vocals
Jon Zazula -- executive producer
Chris Bubacz -- engineer
Kent Joshpe -- illustration and logo
SHAROLD Studios -- mechanical art

return to ANTHRAX discography

US January 1984 Megaforce LP/CS MRI/MRIT 469  
UK January 1984 Music For Nations LP/LPPIC MFN14/MFN14P avail. as picture disc
CAN 1984 Banzai LP BNC1902  
US August 1, 1995 Megaforce CD/CS ME/MFRC 1953  
US February 22, 2005 Megaforce CD MEGACD2953 repackaged w. ARMED AND DANGEROUS
GER   SPV 2CD SPV 076-18182 repackaged w. ARMED AND DANGEROUS


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