ANTHRAX guitarist Scott Ian has once again commented on the events of November 13 in Paris, France, when more than 129 people were killed in seven coordinated terrorist attacks.
The greatest number of deaths took place at the Bataclan, a French music venue where EAGLES OF DEATH METAL were performing when terrorists began a siege that ended with 89 people in the club either shot to death or killed in explosions.
During a chat at the headquarters of ANTHRAX’s European record label, Nuclear Blast, Ian was asked why ANTHRAX and SLAYER chose to continue their tour following the Paris attacks. He responded (see video below): “Unless we were told we couldn’t play, because it would be a safety concern for our fans and the bands, obviously, involved, unless the promoters came to us and said, ‘We can’t put the shows on,’ that’s the only way we would have stopped playing. But that didn’t happen. The choice was given to us and SLAYER: ‘Do you wanna carry on?’ And [the answer] was a resounding ‘Fuck yes! We’re not going home.'”
He continued: “It’s what we do. This is what we do. And I know it sounds so cheesy to say it, but, you know, if we just walk away and go home, then [the terrorists] win. That phrase gets overused so much, but there’s truth to it. They’ve struck a chord of fear in a place that had never been struck before — the fact that a music venue was attacked and it happened to be a hard rock band playing there. So it does definitely hit closer to home, certainly, but at the same time, we’re not gonna stop what we’re doing, unless we’re told we can’t do it, [unless we’re told] there’s nowhere for us to possibly play because… for the safety of everyone involved. But other than that, we’re just gonna continue on and do what we do.”
Ian added: “Look, we’re here to entertain people. The show shows up in your town and for three to four hours every night, it takes you out of that shitty bubble that everyone has to deal with every day and what’s going on on the planet. And you get to come to the ANTHRAX / SLAYER show and vent and let all that aggression out and have a catharsis and have fun and leave with a smile on your face. And I think that’s really important in times likes these, to be able to do that. And it’s important for us to do it too, ‘cause every night we get to play, we feel good about it. So that’s why. There was no way we were gonna stop.”
The attacks in Paris led to a military response by France against the radical Islamic organization ISIS, as French jets bombed a series of targets in Syria.
The murders have stepped up worldwide concern over ISIS, as well as a debate in the U.S. over whether to accept Syrian refugees.
ANTHRAX’s new album, “For All Kings”, will be released on February 26, 2016 via Nuclear Blast in Europe and Megaforce in the U.S.