Ontario Bands Week: Album Review – Anvil – Anvil Is Anvil (2016)

Anvil has always one been one of those “cold have, should have” bands. They should have been more famous. They should have gotten more respect. In fact, with their lack of success they should have quit long ago. However, they trudge on. I personally think they keep trudging on because they really love what they do for a living. How many of us can say that? Who cares how many albums they have sold, and whether they can sellout arenas any longer.

Daggers And Rum – I was assuming this was going to be a hokey pirate song. Well, it kind of is but it actually kicks some ass.

Up Down Sideways- Lips does his best Lemmy impression here. Robb Reiner does an amazing job as usually. The drums are loud and proud, and the bass is booming at times, and playful  at others.

Gun Control – A Canadian metal band starting off with the lyrics “Protect the Constitution….”. I guess this is a shot at our neighbours to the south. The guitar and cowbell are stars here for me.

Die For a Lie – More awesome drums mixed with rhythmic guitars. Also more cowbell, so I’m roped in.

Runaway Train – The train noise at the start reminds me of a Monster Truck song, then Robb pounds on the skins. If you have not heard his drumming before, you really must. He may be the most overlooked and underrated drummer in metal, if not in rock period.

Zombie Apocalypse – Another title that makes me think hokey. The background chants are pretty cool, and of course Rob pounds us into submission. Not near as hokey as I has assumed.

It’s Your Move – This is a song in tribute to Lemmy. Unfortunately it’s a very simple song that is a bit of filler.

Ambushed – This has a Megadeth feel to it. Especially the guitar work, and the fast pace. If you like the Peace Sells and Countdown era of Megadeth(who doesn`t),you will like this song.

Fire On The Highway – A faster paced, almost thrash song. Lips almost does a cross between James Hetfield and Lemmy here.

Run Like Hell – Great guitar work mix with amazing drumming kick this one off. It`s too bad the vocals are a little weak, and the song itself is just a slight level below the rest.

Forgive Don`t Forget – A heavy metal chant song. Almost reminds me of Balls To The Wall by Accept. This is actually fitting since Accept is German. The song is in reference to the treatment of Jews during Nazi Germany.

Never Going To Stop (Bonus Track) – Robb starts pounding the drums at a frenetic pace and he keeps it up for most of this song. Lips sings this song in sort of an angry tone. It suits the song well. He has the snarl of a punk singer, and he wants to get it through your thick head that they are never gonna stop. I for one, believe them, and am pretty happy about that.

You Don`t Know What It`s Like – The guitar is the star here for me. A few slight squealies are fine on an album as long the guitarist doesn`t abuse them. Lips adds just the right amount. Also there is more cowbell. Maybe not quite enough for Christopher Walken, but enough. “To make a living doing what you love is all you should need….”. I couldn`t have said it better myself.

This album was produced by Martin Pfeiffer who may be best known for working with U.D.O. (maybe that is where the Accept crept in). He does a great job here. The album sounds great, and the instrumentation was not crushed or muffled as can sometimes happen.

I read a ton of negativity about this album online before I started this post, so I guess I will be in the minority. But, frankly Scarlet, I don`t give a damn. I like this album, and I don`t really care who knows it. I don`t love it, but I do really like it. There are a few glitches. The bonus tracks could probably be substituted on the regular version with a few others, but overall a really good record.




6 thoughts on “Ontario Bands Week: Album Review – Anvil – Anvil Is Anvil (2016)

  1. Anvil! Well I have the first three albums of there career. Bought the Greatest Hits Backwaxed and than I left.
    Tbone for my Bday bought the Story of ANVIL and when they hit Tbay a few years back me and my brother went.
    I howled when they opened with March Of The Crabs….pretty decent but they really needed a rhythm axeman as Lips live guitar sounded weak….than again I’m half deaf…

    Liked by 1 person

    • To me Anvil are a “fun” band live. Like The Rolling Stones or Spinal Tap.

      I would never go to an Anvil show and expect to be awe struck by their perfection (although Robb is pretty damn good), but I know I will laugh, smile, have a good time with a bunch of dudes that will entertain and put on a good show whether there is 50 people or 500.

      You can see and hear on the second video that Lips makes a few minor miscues, but he actually is good on this album.
      Give it a shot. This is 13 is good too.


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