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FRANK BELLO On ANTHRAX's European Tour Cancellation: "It Was Three Times The Budget"

"The buses, just life in general. It's horrible."

anthrax 2020
Photo by Travis Shinn

Cancelling shows isn't in the Anthrax DNA. But sometimes, there are things that are truly beyond the band's control, as bassist Frank Bello explained in a recent interview with Blabbermouth regarding the band's cancellation of a planned European tour.

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"The god's honest truth: Everything budgeting-wise is insane right now. We budgeted it last year and came back to this year with the gas lines and all the shit that's going on. It was three times the budget," Bello said. "We would have gone into a bad deficit, horrible. And the promoters are saying, 'It doesn't make sense for you guys to do it.' The buses, just life in general. It's horrible. We were able to salvage the U.K. But people know us. They know we'll be back. We love it there. I can't wait to go back. It's just a bummer that life is in the way of metal. [Laughs] What's going on in the world is in the way of metal and making people feel good with our music."

For American bands looking to tour Europe, the pain of inflation has been real. Tour cancellations have become a regular headline of late, with Anthrax and Primus being two of the biggest names in rock forced to call off trips overseas as a result of insane costs pushing budgets to the point of brink and break.

"We've been away," Bello continued. "We just did the Black Label Society and Hatebreed tour and we got the taste back. We were looking forward to the next leg, the U.K., then right into Europe. We're used to touring a few months at a time. Then our manager comes, 'We can't do this with the accounting.' It's like, 'What? How did this happen?' Then you read the papers and you understand. It's terrible."

Bello also touched on the inclusion on "Only"—the John Bush-era track and first single from Anthrax's Sound of White Noise LP—in recent set lists. So far, it's the only track from the Bush era that the band has tackled since the return of singer Joey Belladonna.

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"There's always talk about [trying other Bush-era songs]," said Bello. "It's crazy. There are two different bands within Anthrax. The way I feel about it: We've been very fortunate to have two separate bands, one with Joey, one with John. They're both to be celebrated. There's such a catalog of Joey, right? It's so hard even to get those songs in the setlist. There's obscure ones. Look, I want to play 'Lone Justice', 'The Enemy'. I don't know how they'd go over. It's hard to mix that in with the John Bush catalog. I think baby steps with that."

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