Last fall, the announcement of the upcoming graphic novel inspired by ANTHRAX's landmark 1987 album dominated the news cycle across the music and pop culture landscape. The "Among The Living" graphic novel pulls together a who's who of names from around comics and music for a track-by-track storyline inspired by one of heavy metal's most iconic albums. Today's announcement brings news that four members of the classic ANTHRAX lineup will contribute to the upcoming graphic novel, with Frank Bello writing a chapter, and Joey Belladonna penning the foreword.
I'm truly excited about this graphic novel," said Bello. "'Among The Living' was a very special record for ANTHRAX, and this is a great way to celebrate it while having all the amazing people adding their talents to it. I had a blast writing a chapter for it and letting my mind go to the dark side."
Said Belladonna, "It is quite neat to be able to turn an album from years ago into a very special graphic novel. It's got cool stories and artwork from extraordinary people, good friends, artists and musicians who have joined us for a unique venture through 'Among The Living'."
An anthology narrated by longtime mascot "The Not Man" newly designed by Greg Nicotero ("The Walking Dead"), "Among The Living" unites bandmembers Joey Belladonna, Frank Bello, Charlie Benante and Scott Ian with writers Brian Azzarello, Grant Morrison, Jimmy Palmiotti, Brian Posehn, Rick Remender, Corey Taylor, Joseph Trohman, Gerard and Mikey Way, and Rob Zombie, with more to be announced. Artists include Roland Boschi, Maan House, Dave Johnson, Scott Koblish, Darrick Robertson and Erik Rodriguez, and more, with covers by Charlie Benante, JG Jones, and Eric Powell. As previously announced, Ian will contribute an original story inspired by the fan favorite anthem "I Am The Law", featuring the legendary comic book antihero Judge Dredd, in partnership with 2000 AD. This will make official the decades long connection between the character and the band, rewarding comic book fans and metalhead alike.
ANTHRAX's landmark 1987 album influenced an entire generation of metalhead, cementing the New York band's place in the Big Four of 1980s thrash metal alongside METALLICA, SLAYER and MEGADETH. The first in a string of certified gold and platinum ANTHRAX albums amounting to millions of records sold in North America alone, "Among The Living" ranks high in The 100 Greatest Metal Albums of All Time (Rolling Stone), The 50 Best Metal albums of the Last 50 Years (Metal Hammer), and The 25 Greatest Thrash Metal Albums Ever (Kerrang!). As recently as March 2020, Loudwire noted that the Decibel Hall Of Fame inductee is "now widely regarded as one of the best thrash metal albums of all time."
To celebrate today's news, Z2 has partnered with ESP guitars to give away a stage-played "Among The Living" bass (1/200 produced) signed by Frank Bello himself. Additionally, Z2 will throw in the super deluxe graphic novel package from Z2 Comics. The super deluxe graphic novel package includes oversized hardcover graphic novel, slipcase featuring Greg Nicotero's zombie "Not Man," exclusive vinyl picture disc, limited edition "Not Man" NECA Madball toy, limited edition "Not Man" t-shirt, five "Among The Living"-inspired lithographs, and exclusive "Among The Living" gold record plaque custom-monogrammed with your name.
Additionally, Z2 and ANTHRAX premiere the first new art from the project, illustrated by Erik Rodriguez and Steve Chanks. These pages are from the Rob-Zombie-written chapter inspired by the song "Imitation Of Life".
All editions of the are available to order directly from Z2's web site now, with Charlie Benante's Judge Dredd variant exclusive to pre-orders of the standard edition.