Last week, your friendly neighborhood Crawler caught up with Anthrax axe-man Scott Ian for an exclusive interview with bona fide, thrash-metal royalty.
The focus then was on Ian’s upcoming Speaking Words show, a one-man monologue tour he debuted in Europe in which he regales attendees with tales equal parts lurid and ludicrous from his nearly four decades in the biz.
Before concluding said interview, however, the Crawler asked Ian if he would be so kind as to entertain a query concerning Anthrax proper. He obliged, and here’s the exchange that transpired:
Nightcrawler: I would be remiss not to ask you about something that hits closer to home for us New Englanders. You have Massachusetts’ Jon Donais in the fold as a full-fledged member of Anthrax. Couldn’t happen to a nicer guy and I’m curious… how did this come about? And do you know what his plans are for the future of Shadows Fall?
Scott Ian: Well, you’d have to ask him about his future plans. All I know is, he called me the other day and said he had some great lead lines worked out, and the Anthrax plan is to record a new full-length, then hit the road for what I’d imagine would be an 18-month touring cycle.
As to how he came into the fold—again, you have to understand we are all friends. When [Anthrax drummer] Charlie was injured, [Shadows Fall drummer] Jason Bittner filled in in the past. So I was friends with Rob Caggiano before he was with Anthrax, during his stay with us and now, after he’s left to pursue other interests. And when he left, he said, “You know, you may want to consider Jon Donais as my replacement.” And I said, “Funny, we were thinking the same thing.”
Three days later, a local talent promoter shed some light on Shadows Fall’s future.
“I cannot speak for whatever plans the band may have, but I do know Shadows Fall will be at my Tru Entertainment & Promotions’ (truentertainmentandpromotions.com) show at Maximum Capacity in Chicopee on Friday, June 20 with Jon Donais on guitar,” revealed John Tru.
In what he is dubbing a “summer kick-off show of epic proportions,” Tru said he was able to secure the hometown heroes to headline a multi-band affair that also includes a CD release party for New Haven hardcore heavyweights Dead By Wednesday and official reunions by local notables Split Shift and Medicated Savage.
“I was able to secure Shadows Fall as they prepare to hit East Coast clubs in celebration of 10 years since the release of their third studio album, The War Within,” Tru explains. “So when you put that with everything else we have planned, that’s a whole lot of Western Mass history being wrapped up in one night!”
“You know, John came to us and floated the idea of a reunion a while ago, and it just started to gain momentum,” adds Medicated Savage’s Bob “Crash” Gordon. “So we threw a new Facebook page up and hit over 300 likes in a week, which really made it feel like a good idea, because it seems people are still looking for more from us.”
One program note: Gordon adds that the original lineup will be joined by new bassist Francisco Gongora, formerly of Black Heart.
“Other than that, the plan for the immediate future is to record some or all of the new material we had started playing back in 2010 before we went away, and also to re-record our last single, ‘The Blood of Heroes,’ with more attention to detail this time,” Gordon concludes.
Last but not least, two new syndicated radio shows have found local homes at Valley-based stations this month. The first, Floydian Slip, began airing March 1 on WAQY and chronicles the history of the legendary Pink Floyd Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 9 p.m.
The second, “Anything Anything,” is a two-hour free-form program that airs Sundays on LAZER 99.3 FM starting at 10 p.m.
“Although the show originates from my vinyl record room in New Jersey, I’m very excited to be airing in the Springfield market and checking out the Northampton arts scene,” host Rich Russo declares. “I will definitely make sure that some local artists air on the show, too.”
For details on how to get your band’s musical masterpiece into the mix, visit richrusso.net.•
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