Take this news with a grain of salt…
Neil Turbin, the vocalist who performed on Anthrax's debut record, Fistful of Steel record, recently was interviewed by The Metal Voice, and shared an interesting tidbit about thrash history. While discussing recording the track "Metal Thrashin' Mad" he shared this story:
“I knocked it out of the park. I think on that particular song, I remember being in the studio, and I know that Jonny Z.[Megaforce records founder Jon Zazula] was listening to these songs while we were up in the studio, he was there for part of the time, and he was up there when I was doing vocals if I recall correctly. And I think at that point there were some interesting comments made… he of course managed Metallica at the time, and, y’know, he talked about ‘Oh, maybe we should get to sing for Metallica’ or something like that. I’m like, y’know, ‘No, that’s alright, thanks though.’”
On the one hand, I feel like Turbin wouldn't lie about this because he knows this story would get out and immediately get refuted, but on the other hand, I'm thinking Jon Zazula has better things to do than reply to Turbin's claims.
While the timeline of this story isn't clear, as MetalSucks points out, "Fistful came out in January of ’84, six months after the release of Metallica’s own debut, Kill ‘Em All." So, by that point, Metallica had already taken off and were leading the pack. It's odd that the band would want to change their already established sound with one of the most notable frontman in heavy metal to Neil Turbin, who ended up being a footnote in the thrash world.
Then again, here is footage of Anthrax with Turbin in 1982, so perhaps this was before Kill 'Em All or the demo that Metallica considered Turbin as their vocalist. Who knows?
Could Turbin have pulled off the gig? Let us know in the comments.