Gig Review: Anthrax / Municipal Waste – O2 Academy, Glasgow (30th September 2022)

After another shit shift at the day job, the Friday feeling kicks in. On an average weekend it would be dealt with by sitting on the PlayStation and shooting nazis in the face or something. However, this September ends on thrash Friday and Glasgow is about to get fucked up. Why? Thrash kings Anthrax and Municipal Waste are in town!

Municipal Waste (c) Paul Hutchings

I arrive at a jam-packed Academy post-opening band Sworn Enemy. I’ve missed the hardcore heroes’ set though I’m sure it was a good one given the masses in attendance. Barely having a pint in hand, the intro tape rings over the PA. It’s time to get Wasted!

From the first second to the last, Municipal Waste are on top form. The crossover party artists cram loads of slamming songs into their 40-minute set. The pit is in constant motion throughout classic Waste hits like “Unleash the Bastards” and “Beer Pressure”, thrashing alongside new bangers “Grave Dive” and “ Electrified Brain”.

The energy in the Academy is nuclear as the band rage onstage while gang shouts and sweaty hair fill the air. The intensity culminates in the Municipal Waste signature move, “Wave of Death”, where frontman Tony Foresta invokes a mass crowd surf. The Waste command is obeyed as a tsunami of bodies sail over the first few rows.

In true Municipal Waste form the finisher is a final megamosh in “Born to Party”. The mass shout-along to immortal ending line “Municipal Waste is gonna fuck you up!” never gets old, and as always it rings true. The job is done and the Academy is fucked up and ready for the headliners.

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Anthrax need no introduction however this tour is special, celebrating the band’s 40th anniversary. A familiar ticking noise rings over the PA before an extensive intro video plays featuring testimonials to the awesomeness that is Anthrax from various famous faces in the metal world, cheers erupting from the crowd with each one. The canvas covering the front of the stage drops to rapturous applause as the thrash legends stand smiling, with the intro to “Among the Living” filling the room. When the beat hits, heads bang and voices scream along to every word.

Anthrax (c) Paul Hutchings

The tone is set and the trend continues through a set list of classic bangers. The pit is going wild through “Caught in a Mosh” and “Madhouse” and shows no sign of slowing down. It’s always a madhouse when Anthrax hit the stage, with frontman Joey Belladonna working up the crowd as he nails every note of his signature soaring vocals.

Keeping it old-skool with “Metal Thrashing Mad” the band prove that four decades later, that still describes them as they work the stage and wreck their necks. The killer stomp of “Keep it in the Family” follows invoking an irresistible urge to slam dance before guitarist Scott Ian reminisces about Anthrax’s first time in Scotland. They played in Edinburgh’s Playhouse in 1986 promoting Spreading the Disease and debuted “I Am the Law” on the Euro tour. The fans went mental then and formed a special relationship with the band, culminating in the Kings Among Scotland DVD. As always this time is no different.

A few more tunes later and I unfortunately had to leave to make the bus home. Though as I was leaving I heard the thumping drum intro to “Indians” through one of the fire exits outside and I had to stop and enjoy a final few minutes before heading up the road.

It was an amazing show with both Anthrax and Municipal Waste’s performances on point. They were tight, heavy, fast and commanded the stage, keeping the sold-out madhouse partying the whole show. I only wish I could have stayed until the end. However I feel like it won’t be such a long wait to see either in the future… [Anthrax have been announced for Bloodstock 2023 – Mosh]

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Pics by Paul Hutchings

Anthrax: official | facebook | twitter | instagram | spotify | youtube

Municipal Waste: official | facebook | twitter | instagram | spotify | bandcamp |youtube

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