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Among the Living
Among the Living
Album info
ReleaseMarch 22, 1987
Recorded1986 at Quadradial Studios, Miami, Florida and Compass Point Studios, Nassau, Bahamas
GenreThrash metal, speed metal
Length50:13
LabelMegaforce, Island
ProducerAnthrax, Eddie Kramer, Jon Zazula

Among the Living is the third studio album by American thrash metal band Anthrax. It was released in March 1987 by Megaforce Worldwide/Island, and was certified gold by the RIAA on July 31, 1990.[1] The BBC has described the album as "arguably their big breakthrough", and "often cited by fans as their favorite Anthrax album".[2]

Album informationEdit

Among the Living was produced by Anthrax and Eddie Kramer. It includes the singles, "I Am the Law" and "Indians". The video for "Indians" received substantial rotation on MTV.

The cover of Among the Living depicts the character Rev. Henry Kane, antagonist from the Poltergeist series of films. It has been said to depict the character Randall Flagg, the subject of the album's title track, the antagonist from the Stephen King novel The Stand, but drummer Charlie Benante denies this, claiming "I wasn't thinking about The Stand when I had the idea" for the cover.[3]

"I Am the Law" is a tribute to comic book hero Judge Dredd.[4] Numerous characters, settings and story elements from Dredd's fictional universe are referenced in the song's lyrics. "Efilnikufesin (N.F.L.)" ("nise fukin life" spelled backwards) is about comedian John Belushi's drug addiction and death. "Indians" and the mosh pit anthem "Caught in a Mosh" are still considered Anthrax classics today. "A Skeleton in the Closet" is inspired by the Stephen King novella "Apt Pupil".

This was the final Anthrax album to feature songwriting contributions from original bassist Danny Lilker, who, despite having left the band after 1984's Fistful of Metal, was credited as the co-writer of several Anthrax songs for the next two albums. On Among the Living, he is credited as the co-writer of the songs "I Am the Law" and "Imitation of Life".

The album was dedicated to the memory of Metallica bassist Cliff Burton, a highly regarded figure in the thrash community, with whom they were label mates at Megaforce Records and who died six months prior to the album's release.

On November 10, 2009, a deluxe edition of the album was released which included a bonus concert DVD. The deluxe edition featured alternate takes of several album tracks, live versions and "I Am the Law" b-side, "Bud E Luv Bomb And Satan's Lounge Band".[5] During the Metal Alliance 2013 tour, Anthrax played the Among the Living album in its entirety.

In August 2014, Revolver placed the album on its "14 Thrash Albums You Need to Own" list.[6]

Track listingEdit

All songs written and composed by Anthrax except "I Am the Law" and "Imitation of Life" by Anthrax and Danny Lilker
Side one
No. Title Length
1. "Among the Living"   5:16
2. "Caught in a Mosh"   5:00
3. "I Am the Law"   5:57
4. "Efilnikufesin (N.F.L.)"   4:54
5. "A Skeleton in the Closet"   5:32
Side two
No. Title Length
6. "Indians"   5:40
7. "One World"   5:56
8. "A.D.I./Horror of It All"   7:49
9. "Imitation of Life"   4:22
2009 Deluxe Edition bonus tracks[5]
No. TitleWriter(s) Length
10. "Indians" (Alternate lead)Anthrax 5:39
11. "One World" (Alternate take)Anthrax 5:55
12. "Imitation of Life" (Alternate take)Anthrax, Danny Lilker 4:26
13. "Bud E Luv Bomb and Satan's Lounge Band"  Anthrax 2:45
14. "I Am the Law" (Live in Dallas)Anthrax, Danny Lilker 6:03
15. "I'm the Man" (Instrumental)Joey Belladonna, Dan Spitz, Scott Ian, Frank Bello, Charlie Benante, John Rooney 3:04
2009 Deluxe Edition Disc 2: "Oidivnikufesin (N.F.V.)" DVD. Recorded live in London, England, November 16, 1987.[5]
No. Title Length
1. "Intro"    
2. "Among the Living"    
3. "Caught in a Mosh"    
4. "Metal Thrashing Mad"    
5. "I Am the Law"    
6. "Madhouse"    
7. "Indians"    
8. "Medusa"    
9. "Efilnikufesin (N.F.L.)"    
10. "Armed and Dangerous"    
11. "A.I.R./I'm the Man/A.I.R."    
12. "Gung Ho"    

Song informationEdit

  • "Among the Living" is based on the Stephen King novel The Stand. "The Walkin Dude" is Randall Flagg, the main villain in the book, and the beginning verse: "Disease! Disease! Spreading the disease!\With some help from Captain Trips\He'll bring the world down to its knees" refers to the virus that destroys most of the population in the novel. The song was released as downloadable content for the Rock Band series as a master track.
  • The re-recorded version of "Among the Living" from The Greater of Two Evils is used as a background to the movie Clerks II teaser.[7][8]
  • "Caught in a Mosh" is ranked #29 in VH1's "40 Greatest Metal Songs."[9] A cover version of the song is included in the game Guitar Hero Encore: Rocks the 80s[10] and the master recording of the song is included in Guitar Hero: Smash Hits and in Rock Band 3.
  • "I Am the Law" is about the comic book character Judge Dredd.
  • "Efilnikufesin (N.F.L)" is about the life of John Belushi. Efilnikufesin is "Nise Fukin Life" ("nice fucking life", phonetically) backward.
  • "A Skeleton in the Closet" is based on the Stephen King novella "Apt Pupil" from the collection Different Seasons. It has since been made into a movie.
  • The A.D.I. in "A.D.I/Horror of It All" stands for Arabic Douche Intro or Arabian Douchebag Intro.
  • "Indians" was released as downloadable content for the Rock Band series as a master track and is included in the game Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock.[11]
  • "Imitation of Life" is a remake, of the S.O.D. song "Aren't You Hungry?".

PersonnelEdit

Band members
Production
  • Eddie Kramer - producer, engineer
  • Chris Rutherford - engineer
  • Francis McSweeney, Chip Schane - assistant engineers
  • George Marino - mastering at Sterling Sound, New York
  • Jon Zazula - executive producer

ChartsEdit

Chart (1987) Debut
position
UK Albums Chart 18
Swedish Albums Chart 3
US Billboard 200 62

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit

Template:Anthrax

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