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Scott Ian Issues Statement About Sitting Out July Anthrax Shows

Kevin Winter, Getty Images

Last week, we reported that Anthrax guitarist Scott Ian was planning to sit out a few shows this summer while he and his wife Pearl awaited the birth of their first child. We lovingly referred to Ian’s time off as a “paternity leave,” which is certainly something that a man who is preparing to be a father should take.

In a recent media statement, Ian shared more details about how and why he arrived at his decision, and why he chose Sepultura guitarist Andreas Kisser to substitute for him.

Scott Ian’s statement:

“Hello my friends, how are you all? I hope you’re all kicking ass.

I know there’s been a lot of rhetoric out there regarding upcoming Anthrax shows, Big 4 and otherwise.

I’ve been debating on whether or not to make a public statement about this as it really pertains to my personal life and I generally like to keep that personal. Because this is affecting my band life, I feel like you, my friends, deserve to hear from me personally.

I will be playing the Big 4 show April 23 in Indio, CA s well as the shows in Manila, Bangkok, and Japan that will follow the Indio show.

I won’t be playing the shows scheduled from July 2 – 16 in Europe and the UK. My wife Pearl and I are expecting our first child and she is due literally the day of the Big 4 Sonisphere show in France.

This decision to miss these shows was a deeply personal one. I co-founded this band July 18, 1981 and for almost 30 years, I have been there for everything we’ve ever done. I have never been faced with anything that would make me even question being there for anything Anthrax related. Becoming a father is the biggest, best thing that’s ever happened to me and it made the decision relatively easy. My priority is with my wife and the birth of our first child.

As soon as I was faced with this decision, I knew, as Freddie Mercury so eloquently said, ‘The show must go on.’

I started thinking about guitar players I knew, guys that I am a fan of, guys that I respect, guys that headbang like Angus was watching them, guys that I listen to and who I thought had the spirit to enable the show to go on.

This wasn’t a hard decision at all. I asked the rest of the band what they thought, and we were on the same page.

We chose Andreas [Kisser from Sepultura] because we feel he can do the gig better than anyone. He has the fire, the attitude, and the crushing right hand to do the gig. I’ve played with Andreas at the Roadrunner 25th anniversary show, and I’ve gotten up and played with Sepultura, and we are kindred spirits. We both play every show like we’re going to jail the next day, like it’s the last show we’ll ever play. He has what it takes and he has the experience and history to f—ing bring it and make these Anthrax shows something special. I can’t wait to see and hear it for myself!!

This year will bring our tenth Anthrax studio record, featuring the return of the one and only Joey Belladonna. We’re hard at work finishing it and I can say that from the tracks I have heard, it is going to tear your f—ing heads off. I’m looking forward to getting back on the road with the band that is now better than we’ve ever been, and seeing all your sick faces and banging heads.

Cheers,

Scott”

Scott Ian will play the following Anthrax tour dates:

APRIL
23 Empire Polo Club, Indio, CA (Big 4 show)
30 Pulp Summer Slam Festival, Manila, Philippines

MAY
2 AP Parking, Esplanade, Ratchada, Bangkok, Thailand
5 O-East, Tokyo, Japan
6 O-East, Tokyo, Japan
7 Diamond Hall, Nagoya, Japan
9 Big Cat, Osaka, Japan

Andreas Kisser will substitute for Ian on the following dates:

JULY
2 Veltins Arena, Gelsenkirchen, Germany (Big 4 show)
3 Ullevi, Gothenburg, Sweden (Big 4 show)
5 Komplex AG, Zurich, Switzerland
6 Fiera Open Air Arena, Milan, Italy (Big 4 show)
8 Sonisphere Festival, Knebworth, UK
9 Sonisphere Festival, Amneville, France
11 Garage, Saarbrucken, Germany
12 Vega Musikkenshus, Copenhagen, Denmark
14 Slottsfjell Festival, Tonsberg, Norway
15 Dour Festival, Dour, Belgium
16 Zwarte Cross Festival, Lichtenvoorde, Netherlands

Watch the video for ‘In My World’ by Anthrax

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