The band we know as Anvil (Steve ‘Lips’ Kudlow-guitar/vox, Robb Reiner-skins, and Sal Italiano-bass) are nothing but a bunch of slaves. Slaves to the metal, that is. Anvil has just released their 15th studio album titled Hope In Hell. When I asked Anvil’s resident bad ass drummer, Robb Reiner, how to best describe their latest record, he responded, “Hello 1981/1983, done in 2013.” That’s it. There was no elaboration to that, but then again, there didn’t need to be. Where metal groups of old (Metallica) update their sound to appeal to a new generation, that to me smells like the epitome of selling out. And why exactly do groups sell out? Money is a pretty big, if not, the only factor. Is there any other real reason to sell out? Bands (like Metallica, for example) sell out to stay relevant, ultimately sacrificing artistic integrity for the sake of the almighty dollar. Not Anvil. Anvil loves metal and since Steve “Lips” Kudlow and Robb Reiner first got together way back in 1978 they’ve been uncompromising where their music was concerned.
Hope In Hell is a monster of a metal album from the first riffs strummed on the title track to the last licks of the final track.
Hope In Hell is a monster of a metal album from the first riffs strummed on the title track to the last licks of the final track, “Fire At Will“. Hope In Hell is unrelenting in it’s demand to melt faces with its adrenaline fueled tracks. This album is so good and the band is in top form and even after 35 years together, the Anvil boys have yet to slow down. If you’re reading this and are not privy to who Anvil is, well then, you came to the right place. I, like many people came late to the Anvil experience. It wasn’t until 2008 when I was flipping through channels, that I came upon VH1. They were heavily promoting this new documentary that was then coming soon to theaters. The documentary was called Anvil: The Story of Anvil . I had never heard Anvil’s music. I didn’t know what they sounded like, didn’t know what the members of Anvil looked like. I was a blank canvas when it came to this band, but I figured, hey, I like rock documentaries, so why not, right? All I can say is: WOW. The documentary blew me away and I immediately fell in love with the band and their music. I’ve always been a fan of The Metal and to have never heard of these guys before, I was baffled. Where had they been my whole life? It wasn’t until a few days after seeing the documentary that I realized that I’ve been humming their tracks all the live long day. Something had to be done about this. I went out the very next day and I purchased every single Anvil album I could find. Sadly, since there are no more record stores in New York, I was forced into the digital age by having to purchase all their music on iTunes. Whatever. Now I had my Anvil fix. An Anvil fix that was further solidified when I had the opportunity to see them live at the Gramercy Theatre in New York on March 19, 2010. Stellar show from a true blue metal band, but I digress…
Hope In Hell is the fruition of that greatness which remains unwavering in rocking the fuck out.
If my metal readers have a need for speed (metal), why not get your fix from the band that birthed what we know as thrash metal. That’s not a joke. Robb Reiner single handedly invented thrash metal simply because I guess he couldn’t help but play as fast as he does. The rest of the band followed suit. That’s 35 years of experience, people. Many people have copied Anvil’s style and went on to have illustrious careers, but Anvil, ladies and gentlemen, are the originators. They didn’t have the major breaks that other bands (Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer) had. They were once the red headed bastard child that everyone tried to ignore, but thank the gods, Anvil never said die and soldiered on to greatness. Uncompromising, unfiltered, metal greatness. Hope In Hell is the fruition of that greatness which remains unwavering in rocking the fuck out.
When I asked Robb if it was a conscious decision on his and Lips’ part to harken back to the golden age of metal with Hope In Hell, his response, in true Robbo/Metal fashion was as follows: “The whole cd came from a very pure organic process of smoking green and creating more true to form Anvil. That’s just how it came out.” I couldn’t agree more, Mr. Reiner. The lesson for the day is this: Metal today, metal tomorrow, metal forever. Metal is alive and well thanks to Anvil who willingly lead the charge to bring great metal to the masses!