Ian proves he *is* the man

Book reviews


I’m The Man: The story of that guy from Anthrax, Da Capo press, Ian Scott, 2014.


In full disclosure, I was never the biggest Anthrax fan. I only have three of their albums but always had a lot of respect for the band and what they achieved.

I wanted to read Scott Ian’s I’m The Man because through the years he’s been featured in television shows (Metal Evolution, Supergroup), documentaries (Metal: A Headbanger’s Journey) and countless interviews. I always had great respect for Ian. He came across as knowledgeable source, and besides, he truly lives and breathes metal. Scott always comes off as a great dude who is very down to earth in interviews.

More than anyone else, Anthrax is Scott’s baby and he is the face of the band. I enjoy Rock/Metal biographies and this is one I really enjoyed because it felt like it was very genuine and representative of who Scott is a person which let’s face it, not many biographies are able to accomplish. After reading I’m The Man it almost felt like I knew him.

From his upbringing as a Jewish kid in New York who loved KISS to helping out Metallica, forming Anthrax, meeting his idols and experiencing what seems like possibly all the ups and downs of the music industry in one singular volume, I’m The Man is a great ride.

I said Scott’s book is an honest look at his life, but that doesn’t mean it’s a bland boring book by any means. A lot of blood sweat and tears were put into building Anthrax and keeping it going through adversity and lineup changes, a fact the book reflects in a captivating manner.

It’s great to read about the band from Scott’s perspective as he was there all along. He covers all creative and touring process since day one from the first Anthrax demo up until their most recent effort Worship Music with fair amount of details. I liked reading about the Joey Belladonna split and later on the departure of John Bush and how it all happened.

It was fantastic to read about Anthrax’s early days just as it was during the mid 90’s-early 00’s when they struggling to get any support or attention from record labels. He tells funny road stories as well, a lot of which Dimebag Darrell of Pantera is involved in. Meeting the love of his life, Pearl, along with her dad Meat Load was a good read as well.

At about 300 pages it’s a great length for a bio and it’s very satisfying because Scott covers it all (all but the Dan Nelson era for some reason) and gives great insight into what it was like being in Anthrax, his battles with the music industry and his personal life with divorces etc.

For all intents and purposes Ian IS Anthrax and his book is one of the best resources of the subject. It never gets boring or overly long and it stays on track. Even the intro by Metallica’s Kirk Hammett is fantastic.

I’m The Man made me gain even more respect for Scott and because of the book l’m now re-exploring and re-visiting Anthrax’s works. All in all a splendid read for anyone who enjoys a good Metal book/biography in general or Anthrax.

I’ve read a lot of these memoirs and Scott lan’s is one of those I enjoyed the most which came totally unexpected to me. Not everything is covered (Dan Spitz anyone?), but damn near close. I’m The Man is well-written, captivating and covers Anthrax and the rise of Thrash-Metal in an effective manner.

4.5/5 stars.



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