Anvil 2001

Canadian metal mongers Anvil have been around a long time. Formed in the late 70's under the name Lips, the band's name was later changed to reflect the heaviness of the music they created. In the mid 80's Steve "Lips" Kudlow, Dave "Squirrely" Allison, Robb Reiner and Ian Dickson constantly adorned the covers of magazines like Kerrang and Metal Forces and made a major impact on thrash and speed metal. For some odd reason their popularity swiftly dropped off after the release of the "Backwaxed" collection. Anvil, along with their Canadian counterparts Exciter, fell behind bands like Slayer, Metallica, Anthrax, and the soon emerging Bay Area thrash movement. Despite this setback, as well as label problems, legal problems, and the loss of members, Anvil has forged ahead, continuing to release high caliber heavy metal year after year. Their popularity increased once again with the release of the movie "Anvil-The Story of Anvil" in 2009.

"Anvil's music would turn out to be the bridge between that first wave of British heavy metal and the new wave of American speed or thrash metal."
- Slash
, 2009

"You thought that metal was a trend, I've got some news for you my friend. Anvil music is what I am. I really don't give a damn if you think that we suck...
Real Metal!" -Lips

Hard N Heavy
Anvil - Hard 'n' Heavy (Unidisc) 1981
Anvil - Hard 'n' Heavy (Attic) 1981

1. "School Love" (3:15)
2. "AC/DC" (4:41)
3. "At the Apartment" (3:21)
4. "I Want You Both (With Me)" (3:21)
5. "Bedroom Game" (4:01)
6. "Oooh Baby" (2:56)
7. "Paint it Black" (3:55)
8. "Oh Jane" (4:53)
9. "Hot Child" (4:10)
10. "Bondage" (4:31)

Ian Dickson, Steve "Lips" Kudlow, Robb Reiner, Dave Allison

"Hard 'n Heavy" was originally released under the band name LIPS, until the band signed with Attic Records and changed their name to Anvil. "Hard 'N Heavy" sounds unlike any other Anvil album. Before recording it the band had been playing the bar scene in Canada for many years in the late 70's. This album is a result of those years of bar shows. It's less metallic, and certainly less aggressive, but having grown up with this album it has a certain appeal that I have always liked. Songs like "School Love" and "AC/DC" reek of that early NWOBHM sound, although Anvil obviously are not a European band. Even the obligitory cover of the Stone's "Paint It Black" has that infectious, raw edge that made bands like Raven and Anvil so appealing in the early 80's. Of particular interest to me is the Ted Nugent influences, especially on the song "Bondage" which plays considerable homage to 'ol Teddy during the guitar solo of the song. However, the Ted Nugent influence seems to be throughout. Unfortunately the lyrics on this album are all pretty cliché and downright silly, sounding much like Spinal Tap's "Sex Farm."

Anvil - Metal on Metal
(Attic/Unidisc) 1982

1. "Metal on Metal" (3:57)
2. "Mothra" (5:08)
3. "Stop Me" (5:29)
4. "March Of The Crabs" [instrumental] (2:32)
5. "Jackhammer" (3:32)
6. "Heat Sink" (3:58)
7. "Tag Team" (4:11)
8. "Scenery" (4:45)
9. "Tease Me, Please Me" (4:57)
10. "666" (4:46)

Anvil - Metal on Metal vinyl picture disc

Metal on Metal
Anvil - Metal on Metal autographed LP.


A groundbreaking album in the heavy metal scene. Canada's Anvil were one of the few band's outside of Europe to have a significant effect in the NWOBHM scene. Anvil were gaining major popularity with the release of "Metal On Metal" and with good reason. The intensity level of this disc is like few others, especially coming from North America. Musically songs like "666" are matched by no one else. As a matter of fact, with the possible exception of Accept's "Fast As A Shark" or a few Raven tunes, this could be considered the first thrash metal song. Unfortunately the lyrical theme of this song is as cliché as one might imagine with such a song title. Lines like "I'd rather be a king below than a servant above...You heard my warning but you didn't, didn't, didn't learn...6, 6, 6" are rather insipid and typical of the early 80's heavy metal scene. Shock value is the name of the game here. Fortunately the rest of the album doesn't echo these same themes. "Metal on Metal", the song, is a metal anthem that still sounds a pounding as ever. This particular song is probably the band's most well known and respected, as much for it's lyrics as for the music. "March of the Crabs" is an instrumental that has been a concert staple and fan favorite ever since this album was released. If I am not mistaken, however, this song was being played by the band live even before this album was recorded. "Stop Me" is another one of those songs that will ring in your head forever with it's catchy melody and chorus. This song is about a female fan that wouldn't give into the band's sexual desires beyond a kiss. Overall, a raw, heavy slab of molten metal. Over two decades later and "Metal on Metal" is still one of the band's most respected albums. For years this album was nearly impossible to find, other than on the atrocious "Molten Masterpeices" re-issue. Finally in 2002 Unidisc put out remastered versions of the band's first four albums. There isn't much in the way of additional liner notes or photos, but all the original notes and cover art are included.

Six Feet Under recorded a cover of the song "Metal on Metal".

Anvil EP Anvil (Attic Records) 1982

1. Stop Me
2. Jackhammer
3. Tease Me, Please Me
4. Steamin'

This four song EP was released in Europe in 1982 to help promote the "Metal on Metal" album. "Steamin'" was previously and unreleased song recorded during the "Metal on Metal" sessions, and later released on the "Backwaxed" compilation. The other three tracks all appear on "Metal on Metal". The back cover features a killer photo of the band, with Ian Dickson and Dave Allison sporting classic Girlschool shirts. The 12" EP is nothing more than a hot Anvil collectible.

Make It Up To You Anvil - Make It Up to You (Attic Records) 1983

1. Make It Up to You (Remix)
2. "Metal on Me"
3. "School Love"

12" version vinyl EP that was released to promote the "Forged In Fire" album. There are a couple of 7" versions of this as well. The most common has the same track listing as above, minus "School Love". A different 7" version replaces "Metal on Metal" with "Hard Times - Fast Ladies", also off "Forged in Fire". "Metal on Metal" is from the album of the same name, and "School Love" is from the band's debut "Hard 'n' Heavy".

Forged in Fire Anvil - Forged in Fire (Axe Killer) 1983

1. "Forged in Fire" (4:42)
2. "Shadow Zone" (3:57)
3. "Free As The Wind" (5:31)
4. "Never Deceive Me" (3:30)
5. "Butter-Bust Jerky" (3:17)
6. "Future Wars" (3:07)
7. "Hard Times - Fast Ladies" (3:46)
8. "Make It Up To You" (3:30)
9. "Motormount" (3:41)
10. "Winged Assassins" (3:44)

Forged in Fire Japanese LP

There is no other album in the Anvil catalogue that is more a classic than "Forged in Fire." Anvil were at the top of their game here with an album that was slightly more technical than "Metal on Metal" yet still retaining an over-the-top spontaneity. "Forged in Fire" managed to take the early heavy metal sounds of Saxon, Priest and the Scorpions and make it noisier and faster, similar to Raven, bridging a gap between traditional metal and thrash metal.

My particular copy is a 1998 French re-issue that contains lyrics, plenty of photos and a short essay by Martin Poppoff, author of 'the Collector's Guide to Heavy Metal

Powergod recorded a cover of "Motormount".

Steve "Lips" Kudlow

Backwaxed Anvil - Backwaxed (Attic) 1985

1. "Backwaxed" (3:45)
2. "Steamin'" (3:36)
3. "Pussy Poison" [instrumental] (2:38)
4. "You're A Liar" (4:52)
5. "Fryin' Cryin'" (3:04)
6. "Metal On Metal" (3:54)
7. "Butter-Bust Jerky" (3:17)
8. "Scenery" (4:39)
9. "Jackhammer" (3:30)
10. "School Love" (3:15)

Dave Allison

This album was released by Attic, apparently with no interaction, or permission for that matter, from the band. This is why the album is not named in the usual Anvil fashion and is the only album to not have an anvil on the cover. The first 5 tracks were previously unreleased, except for "Steamin'" which was released as a limited edition European 12" EP. (Essentually unreleased.) The other 5 are from the first 3 albums. "Steamin'", "You're A Liar" and "Fryin' Cryin'" were apparently all recorded during the "Metal on Metal" sessions, but left off the album for unknown reasons. Of the "Forged in Fire" tracks, the label picked out the worst song from this excellent classic ("Butter-Bust Jerky" ). It's not that the song is bad, just that there are far better on the album, including the the title song. Only one song from the band's impossible to find first album makes it's way too ("School Love.") 'Metal on Metal' is one of my favorite metal anthems ever. Always thought it would be a cool song for some band to cover, but I have yet to hear one. This song has some gnarly vocals laid on top of a mean metal riff. Of the unreleased material, the best is "Steamin'" with it's shred solos and the instrumental "Pussy Poison." According to the liner notes this song was left off 'Hard n Heavy' due to the song title. "Backwaxed" a totally vile sex song that was left of 'Metal on Metal' for it's lyrical content. Odd that they would exclude a song for lyrical content, as if this was the only foul song the band ever wrote. "You're A Liar" features the vocals of guitarist Dave Allison for the first (and only) time. Overall, a decent compilation that has some nice rarities.

Anvil - Strength of Steel
(Hypnotic) 1987
Anvil - Strength of Steel (Metal Blade/Enigma) 1987

1. "Strength of Steel" (3:30)
2. "Concrete Jungle" (5:21)
3. "9-2-5" (2:56)
4. "I Dreamed It Was the End of the World" (4:14)
5. "Flight of the Bumble Beast" (2:25)
6. "Cut Loose" (3:28)
7. "Mad Dog" (3:13)
8. "Straight Between the Eyes" (3:18)
9. "Wild Eyes" (3:26)
10. "Kiss of Death" (5:21)
11. "Paper General" (4:49)

By all accounts, this is Anvil's weakest output. From interview I read in the past, original members Robb Reiner and Dave Allison felt the band should go in a more 'commercial' direction, while Lips and Ian Dickerson felt the band should continue in the heavier direction they took with "Metal on Metal." The split in ideas caused Lips to give in to his band mates and thus, "Strength of Steel" is supposed to be a completely unfocused album. OK, that is the story I have read. However, the music contained is really not all that commercial or poppy, as some seem to think. Perhaps there aren't any fast songs, like "666" but to me, "Strength of Steel" sounds like classic Anvil. Songs like "Mad Dog," "Concrete Jungle" and the title track are all good mid-paced heavy metal anthems. Granted the clichés are overbearing, but that has always been Anvil's style. As far as I am concerned, despite this not being their best album, I certainly don't consider it a bad one either. "Strength of Steel" is not the 'sellout' everyone made it out to be. Rather, it is a heavy slab of molten metal!

Anvil promo photo 1987:
Ian Dickson, Robb Reiner, Steve "Lips" Kudlow, Dave Allison
autographed by Li[s and Robb Reiner

1987 promo poster

Hi Scott,
Nice to hear from you!!! I have looked at your page in the past and just had a quick reminder by looking just now. I'm particularly happy with what you wrote about Strength of Steel. I happen to agree with you on most points. In the end that is one of our most popular CD's and in fact it has sold more than most of our CD's. We were misunderstood in it's day. It was a good album and always will be. The main problem at that time in history it was the beginning of the fragmentation of the metal genre. Lines were drawn in the sand seperating commercial and non commercial rock. This CD played the line and it wasn't positively accepted from either faction of metal heads. You were correct in saying there was no commercial songs there...and the fact in retrospect is cemented as the truth because the album never got radio play then or now.
All the best and thanks for your continued support....
Steve Kudlow, ANVIL

Anvil - Pound for Pound (Metal Blade) 1988

1. "Blood on the Ice" (5:24)
2. "Corporate Preacher" (4:06)
3. "Toe Jam" (2:46)
4. "Safe Sex" (3:20)
5. "Where Does All the Money Go?" (4:04)
6. "Brain Burn" (3:30)
7. "Senile King" (4:05)
8. "Machine Gun" (2:55)
9. "Fire in the Night" (6:08)
10. "Cramps" (0:14)

Yet another solid slab of heavy metal from Canada's Anvil. "Pound for Pound" was considered a return to form after a somewhat commercial, and disappointing "Strength of Steel." (Although I disagree that it was disappointing.) "Strength of Steel" is as equally pummeling as 'Metal on Metal' and 'Forged in Fire.' As usual for Anvil, some of the lyrics leave a bit to be desired, although I dig the brutal take on ice hockey in "Blood on the Ice". "Corporate Preacher" is yet another slam on TV Evangelists. Unfortunately, in 1988, some of the more well known evangelists were deserving of the chastisement they were receiving. What is unfortunate is that because of a few bad preachers, all TV evangelists are lumped into the 'money hungry robbers' category. Of course, what would an Anvil album be without a silly porn song? This one has two: a sexual square dance called "Toe Jam" that is just a fun romp and ditty, and "Safe Sex," yes a Spinal Tap-ish song about condom use. Yippie! This is one tradition I wish Anvil would drop. However, despite the lyrics, I stil find "Pound for Pound" to be an essential Anvil album. Unfortunately it would be their last studio album with original member Dave Allison.

Past & Present Live Anvil - Past & Present Live (Metal Blade) 1989

  1. "Concrete Jungle" (5:26)
  2. "Toe Jam" (3:19)
  3. "Motormount" (4:14)
  4. "Forged In Fire" (5:30)
  5. "Blood On The Ice" (5:58)
  6. "March Of The Crabs/drum solo/Jackhammer" (11:59)
  7. "Metal On Metal/Winged Assassins" (10:19)
  8. "666/Mothra" (16:03)

"Past & Present Live" was recorded in San Pedro, California, USA and was the last album to feature Dave Allison. Much of the material on this disc is from the bands second and third albums. "March Of The Crabs", "Jackhammer", Metal On Metal", "666" and "Mothra" were originally recorded on 'Metal on Metal.' "Motormount", "Forged In Fire" and "Winged Assassins" were originally recorded on 'Forged in Fire.' "March of the Crabs" features a vicious drum solo by Robb Reiner, who is absolutely one of the heaviest drummers in the world. Overall the band give a good performance and a there is a good mix of songs, although I would have also liked to hear "School Love." Still, a killer live performance from one of the originators of speed metal.

Worth the Weight Anvil - Worth The Weight (Mausoleum) 1991

1. "Infanticide" (7:41)
2. "On The Way to Hell" (6:04)
3. "Bushpig" (4:08)
4. "Embalmer" (6:54)
5. "Pow Wow" (6:00)
6. "Sins of the Flesh" (5:19)
7. "A.Z. #85" (3:12)
8. "Sadness" (2:21)
9. "Love Me When I'm Dead" (6:30)

This one was some three years in the making and certainly Lips and company did not disappoint. New guitarist Sebastian Marino, who later joined Overkill, did an outstanding job. The songs are all bone crushing, not unlike an anvil might do if it were dropped on someone's skull. Long time skin pounder Rob Reiner sounds like he may have needed a new drum set after each song, as he totally destroyed the kit. The band has added some more technical leanings as well, making the songs themselves more interesting than that of anything on 'Pound for Pound.' Tempo changes, stops and starts, and mega-riffs abound. Certainly the band was trying to make a statement musically with this disc. This was the last album for original bassist Ian Dickson.

Some other non-important information that I stole off the band's web page;

Some working titles for this album were TOOLS OF TORTURE and EVOKE THE EVIL.

Lips' real name is Steve Kudlow.

In 1989 Dave Allison left Anvil. Sebastain Marino was recruited as his replacement. Sebastian is from New York, the only non-Canadian Anvil member. He left Anvil in 1995 and joined Overkill. Sebastian was replaced by guitarist Ivan Hurd. Sebastian has also been in an underground band called Ramrod since about 1993. Sebastian left Overkill in 1999. Ian Dickson left the band early in 1993. He was replaced by bassist Mike Duncan. Mike left in 1996 and was replaced by Glenn Five. Glenn Five's real name is Glenn Gyorffy.

At this point the rest of the original Anvil members remained, including Robb Reiner (drums), Lip (vocals/guitars), and Ian Dickson (bass).

Plugged in Permanent Anvil - Plugged in Permanent (Metal Blade) 1996

1. "Racial Hostility" (5:05)
2. "Doctor Kevorkian" (3:56)
3. "Smokin' Green" (4:56)
4. "Destined for Doom" (5:16)
5. "Killer Hill" (3:27)
6. "Face Pull" (3:02)
7. "I'm Trying to Sleep" (3:02)
8. "5 Knuckle Shuffle" (3:27)
9. "Truth or Consequence" (6:39)
10. "Guilty" (6:44)

Anvil  1996

I'm sorry but I'm just not interested in hearing a song about how often Lips yanks his own chain ("5 Knuckle Shuffle"), nor do I care how much of a pot-head he is ("Smokin' Green"). Unfortunately, the lyrics on this disc are all pretty stupid. The music on the other hand, is excellent power/speed metal. Lips voice sounds as good as ever and the production on this disc is some of the best they have ever had, but the lyrics really hold this disc back. Great title for a metal disc though.

Absolutely No Alternative Anvil - Absolutely No Alternative (Massacre) 1997

1. "Old School" (3:46)
2. "Green Jesus" (3:51)
3. "Show Me Your Tits" (2:51)
4. "No One To Follow" (4:42)
5. "Hair Pie" (3:09)
6. "Rubber Neck" (3:11)
7. "Piss Test" (4:10)
8. "Red Light" (4:53)
9. "Black Or White" (3:29)
10. "Hero By Death" (5:22)

Steve "Lips" Kudlow 1996

Once again, Anvil dishes out some seriously heavy speed metal with those signature guitar solos and vocals of Lips. The lyrics on this disc, as with most Anvil discs, are a mixed bag. On the one hand we have a serious look at politics ("No One To Follow") and religious greed ("Green Jesus") sandwiched in between songs like "Show Me Your Tits" and "Hair Pie", both self explanatory. "Rubber Neck" is a song about driving by a car accident and staring at the accident rather than driving your own car, something everyone does where I live. "Piss Test" is about how current society has infringed the rights and privacy of people by forcing them to urinate in those little cups before getting a job, etc. So once again, great music, but I could do without the twisted sex songs. This album is their first album with Glenn Gyorffy. I also read on Anvil's homepage that there are two slightly different covers for this album. The difference is in the color of the lettering at the bottom of the cd.

Speed of Sound Anvil - Speed of Sound (Massacre) 1998

1. "Speed Of Sound" (3:43)
2. "Blood In The Playground" (3:36)
3. "Deadbeat Dad" (3:52)
4. "Man Over Broad" (5:26)
5. "No Evil" (5:26)
6. "Bullshit" (3:24)
7. "Mattress Mambo" (5:21)
8. "Secret Agent" (3:52)
9. "Life To Lead" (4:04)
10. "Park That Truck" (3:30)

Anvil - Speed of Sound autographed LP.

One thing can be said of Anvil, they are certainly consistent. Canada's favorite speed metal band has progressively taken their production up to the highest standards, but the music and lyrical themes have not changed all that much. As usual there are the politically incorrect song ('Park the Truck'), the song about how metal reigns supreme ('Speed of Sound'), and the oddball sex song ('Matress Mambo). The music is faster than most of their early classics, but still retains the speed metal label. Lips voice sounds as brutal as ever. Overall, another fine Anvil output! Crank it up!

Anvil - Massacre's Classix Shape Edition Vol. 10 (Massacre) 1999

  1. "Blood On The Ice" (5:58)
  2. "Doctor Kevorkian" (3:56)
  3. "Old School" (3:46)
  4. "Speed Of Sound" (3:43)
  5. "Metal On Metal" [live] (5:12)

A cooooool collector's disc for Anvil fans. The flying anvil of the shaped disc is from the 'Speed of Sound' cd. "Blood On The Ice" is from the album "Pound for Pound.". "Doctor Kevorkian" is from the album "Plugged in Permanent." "Old School" is from the album "Absolutely No Alternative". "Speed Of Sound" is from the album of the same name. (thanks Arttie)

Anthology Anvil - Anthology of Anvil (Metal Blade) 2000

1. "Metal On Metal" (3:57)
2. "Smokin' Green" (4:56)
3. "Winged Assassins" (3:46)
4. "Free As The Wind" (6:36)
5. "Old School" (3:47)
6. "Bushpig" (4:04)
7. "Blood On The Ice" (5:26)
8. "March Of The Crabs" [instrumental] (2:32)
9. "Jackhammer" (3:32)
10. "Speed Of Sound" (3:45)
11. "666" (4:47)
12. "Stolen" (4:37)
13. "Paper General" (4:47)
14. "Forged In Fire" [live] (5:20)
15. "School Love" (3:16)
16. "Motormount" (3:40)
17. "Doctor Kevorkian" (3:47)
18. "Mothra" (5:06)

Excellent career retrospective of one of heavy metal's most respected underground bands. One of the nice things about this disc is the lengthy liner notes, written by fellow Canadian Martin Poppoff, author of the Heavy Metal Collector's Guide. The five page write-up is titled "Anvil: 20 Years of Thrash," and includes quotes by Anvil members as well as personal comments by Lips about specific songs on this collection. We are even given explanations as to why original members Ian Dickson and Dave Allison left the band. A complete discography (minus "Backwaxed") is also included. The song selection comes from all the band's releases but has a strong showing from "Metal On Metal" material. Unfortunately, there is only one rare song. "Stolen" is from the Japanese version of "Plugged in Permanent". This particular track has not been released on any other Anvil release until this collection. My only wish would have been for a couple more "Hard n Heavy" tracks.


Anvil - Plenty of Power
(Hypnotic) 2001

1. "Plenty Of Power" (4:02)
2. "Groove Science" (3:21)
3. "Ball Of Fire" (3:51)
4. "The Creep" (3:38)
5. "Computer Drone" (6:16)
6. "Beat The Law" (3:34)
7. "Pro Wrestling" (4:27)
8. "Siren Of The Sea" (4:14)
9. "Disgruntled" (3:20)
10. "Real Metal" (4:22)
11. "Left Behind" (5:24)


Well, as I have said before, Anvil are nothing if not consistent. I can't imagine any fan of the band not liking this disc as it's pure Anvil speed metal. The Canadian metal legend are one of the very few bands, who were part of the early days of the metal scene and have never let their musical direction waver nor have they let their fans down. One noticeable improvement, at least in my opinion, is the lack of any silly porno songs. HORRAYYYY! I applaud this for sure. Lyrical content covers topics like Pro Wrestling, Disgruntled Postal Workers, Armageddon, being chased by the police and even someone who is addicted to the computer ("Computer Drone"). One other minor change is that the overall sound of "Plenty of Power" is less thrash oriented than the last few albums, recalling more of the "Metal on Metal/Forged in Fire" days. There is still plenty of speed, especially in songs like "Real Metal," which is a song that would make Manowar proud! The last song is a bonus track that is apparently only on the Canadian version. The European version has a bonus track called "Dirty Dorothy".

My copy is autographed by Lips, Robb Reiner, and Glenn Five.

Still Going Strong Anvil - Still Going Strong (Massacre) 2002

1. "Race Against Time" (4:35)
2. "In Hell" (4:20)
3. "Holy Wood" (3:27)
4. "Still Going Strong" (3:40)
5. "Don't Ask Me" (4:38)
6. "Waiting" (4:25)
7. "White Rhino" [instrumental] (5:19)
8. "What I'm About" (4:38)
9. "Sativa" (3:10)
10. "Defiant" (3:58)
Anvil 2002

As the title so eloquently puts it, Anvil are Still Going Strong. If anyone is looking for a change in style from 'ol Anvil, they need to look elsewhere because Anvil are still putting forth bone crushing heavy metal. For some reason, "Still Going Strong" seems to be less focused on speed and aggression than "Speed of Sound" and more on songwriting. The album starts off with a heavy riff that sounds like if could have been written for Judas Priest's "Painkiller", and never really lets up from track one through track ten. Lyrically, Lips doesn't cover any new ground, once again singing the praises of heavy metal and cannabis sativa, as well as his usual rants about living free and religious wrongs. For me personally, some songs are intriguing, causing me to dig out the lyrics and take a deeper look. However, other songs tend to just irritate me. On this disc we have songs like "Holy Wood", that rightly questions the terrible problems within the Catholic church, but at the same time questions whether the entire Bible is even valid. "The Bible is a book that started with Adam and Eve, filled with mambo jumbo, do you believe?" Well, I do! In any case, I particularly like the lyrics to the title track that give a brief overview of rock 'n' roll and plainly states, "critics said, it won't last long, (but) after 50 years, still going strong." "Waiting" gave me a good laugh. Only Lips would think to write a song about how impatient he is and how much he hates having to wait in lines at the grocery store and at banks. "White Rhino" is an instrumental that is made up mostly of a very cool drum solo. Drum and guitar solos have become very unpopular in recent years, so it could be said that Anvil are now the one's going against the grain. But then Anvil never have really cared for trends. Perhaps that is why they are Still Going Strong while many others have passed away.

Ironclad Anvil - Ironclad-The Very Best of Anvil

DISC ONE (Old School 1981-1988)
1. "School Love" (3:18)
2. "AC/DC" (4:45)
3. "Paint It Black" (3:55)
4. "Metal on Metal" (3:56)
5. "March of the Crabs" [instrumental] (2:31)
6. "Jackhammer" (3:31)
7. "Mothra" (5:05)
8. "Forged in Fire" (4:41)
9. "Shadow Zone" (3:57)
10. "Free As the Wind" (5:36)
11. "Motormount" (3:39)
12. "Winged Assasins" (3:45)
13. "Paper General" (4:47)
14. "Strength of Steel" (3:30)
15. "Concrete Jungle" (5:21)
16. "Mad Dog " (3:13)
17. "Blood on the Ice" (5:25)
18. "Toe Jam" (2:46)
DISC TWO (Still Old School 1991-2002)
1. "Bushpig" (4:04)
2. "Dr. Kevorkian" (3:46)
3. "Old School" (3:46)
4. "Speed of Sound" (3:43)
5. "Blood In The Playground" (3:39)
6. "Park That Truck" (3:32)
7. "Plenty Of Power" (4:02)
8. "Groove Science" (3:21)
9. "Ball Of Fire" (3:51)
10. "The Creep" (3:38)
11. "Computer Drone" (6:16)
12. "Real Metal" (4:23)
13. "Race Against Time" (4:36)
14. "Still Going Strong" (3:41)
15. "Don't Ask Me" (4:39)
16. "Waiting " (4:27)
17. "White Rhino" [instrumental] (5:20)

An excellent two disc compilation of the finest metal Anvil has to offer. The reason this disc is so excellent is because it was put together by a friend and myself. We chose some of our favorites from each and every Anvil release, save for Backwaxed (1985) and 'Past & Present Live' (1989). I wanted to include "Steamin'" and the instrumental "Pussy Poison", but unfortunatly ran out of room. On disc two we didn't include any tracks from their newly released 'Back to the Basics' CD because, once again, we ran out of room and didn't want to delete any songs that were already included from the strong Speed of Sound, Plenty of Power and Still Going Strong albums. Of course I wouldn't even include this disc on my site if it weren't for the professional way the discs were made, right down to the cool Anvil cover and print on the disc. (thanks Trog) Here is the breakdown:

Disc One:
Tracks 1-3 Hard 'n' Heavy 1981
Tracks 4-7 Metal on Metal 1982
Tracks 8-12 Forged in Fire 1983
Tracks 13-16 Strength of Steel 1987
Tracks 17-18 Pound for Pound 1988
"Paint it Black" is a Rolling Stones cover.
Disc Two:
Track 1 Worth The Weight 1991
Track 2 Plugged in Permanent 1996
Track 3 Absolutely No Alternative 1997
Tracks 4-6 Speed of Sound 1998
Tracks 7-12 Plenty of Power 2001
Tracks 13-17 Still Going Strong 2002

Back to Basics Anvil - Back to Basics (Massacre Records) 2004

1. "Fuel For The Fire" (4:00)
2. "Keep It Up" (3:46)
3. "Song Of Pain" (5:50)
4. "You Get What You Pay For" (3:45)
5. "The Chainsaw" (5:37)
6. "Can't Catch Me" (3:30)
7. "Go Away" (3:53)
8. "Bottom Feeder" (3:00)
9. "Cruel World" (5:33)
10. Fast Driver" (3:49)

Live at Wacken Open Air Festival, Wacken, Germany - August 7, 1998
1. "Five Knuckle Shuffle"
2. "Smokin' Green"
3. "Old School"
4. "Winged Assassins"
5. "Forged In Fire"
6. "March Of The Crabs"
7. "Metal On Metal"
8. "666"
9. "Mothra"

Lips 05
Steve "Lips" Kudlow 2005

Some bands change directions and styles with each new release, others are like Motorhead, AC/DC and Anvil that know what they do best and prefer to refine their own sound and stay within the confines of that sound. That is certainly the case with Anvil, they are nothing if not consistent. Because of that Anvil take flack from reviewers who are looking for the next new thing. This fan, however, prefers that Anvil sticks to their classic heavy metal sound and that is exactly what Lips and Co. did with "Back to the Basics". This disc is pure heavy metal from the vicious "The Chainsaw" and "Bottom Feeder" to the melodic "Cruel World." As would be expected from an Anvil disc, there are plenty of choice guitar licks laid over top the chugging riffage. OK, so perhaps I am just an Anvil die-hard and will not be able to find fault with anything they do. So what! As long as Anvil keeps pumping out Metal on Metal I will be buying their music.

Add to the appeal a live DVD from the 1998 Wacken Open Air Festival. The sound and picture quality here are good. It's apparent that Lips was in metal heaven on that stage in front of thousands of screaming metalheads. Wish I could have been there. While the sticker on the front says that this CD/DVD version of "Back to the Basics" is a "special edition" I have yet to see an edition without the live DVD. According to the official Anvil website, the U.S. release will have the DVD too, which is cool since the Massacre version is in PAL format and won't play on most U.S. DVD players. Unfortunately for us Americans this CD was release almost a half a year after it was released in Germany. (As of writing this in June 2004, the U.S. version still isn't out and isn't expected out until August.)

This Is Thirteen
Anvil - This Is Thirteen
(Independent) 2007
Anvil - This Is Thirteen (VH-1 Classic) 2009 vinyl

1. "This Is Thirteen" (6:40)
2. "Bombs Away" (3:28)
3. "Burning Bridges" (5:52)
4. "Ready to Fight" (4:14)
5. "Flying Blind" (3:11)
6. "Room #9" (3:50)
7. "Axe to Grind" (4:33)
8. "Feed the Greed" (3:52)
9. "Big Business" (3:26)
10. "Should'a Would'a Could'a" (3:06)
11. "Worry" (3:15)
12. "Game Over" (2:58)
13. "American Refugee" (2:36)
14. "Thumb Hang"
15. "Metal on Metal" [re-recorded]
16. "666" [re-recorded]

This Is Thirteen LP
LP Autographed by Steve 'Lips' Kudlow, Robb Reiner & Glenn Five

Anvil 'n' Me
Myself, Steve 'Lips' Kudlow, Randy Michaud, Feb. 2010

I've said it before, Anvil are like Motorhead and AC/DC, they've been around for decades and they don't really waver from what they do. When you hear an Anvil song, you immediately know it's them. They aren't overly flashy or technical. Rather, they know what they do and they do it well. "This Is Thirteen" is exactly what you would expect from Anvil; classic heavy metal. Where "This is Thirteen" improves upon "Back to the Basics" is that there is more variety in the tempo from song to song, giving the songs more separation. There is the slow, heavy, almost doomy title track, that reminds me of the classic "Forged in Fire", to the mid-paced classic sound of "Burning Bridges" to the speed metal of songs like "Bombs Away", "Ready to fight" and "Room #9". As well, the band reunited with their old producer Chris Tsangarides, who produced "Metal on Metal" and "Forged in Fire", giving "This is Thirteen" a sound not unlike those early classics.

"This is Thirteen" is indeed Anvil's thirteen album and offers thirteen new tracks. For the first time since the band recorded their debut under the name Lips in 1980, Anvil has released this studio album as an independent band. The first pressing of CDs is limited to only 1000 units. I asked the band directly about why they chose to go independent with this album and this was the reply:

In regards to our new cd This is Thirteen, we've chosen to release the CD on our own not using a label. In this day and age record companies are not paying enough money to bands to recoupe recording costs or for tour support. If we sell CDs on our own we stand to make 10x the profit a record company will pay the artist. However we stand to probably sell a quarter of what we may sell with a company but in the end make more money, which will pay for our next CD. We are not sending out promotional copies at this time, however if you wish to purchase Robb, he will be happy to send you one. All the best and thanks for your continued support....

About a year after the original release of "This Is Thirteen" the movie "Anvil, The Story of Anvil" went into theaters. It features a real life Spinal Tap in Anvil and gained the band some new fans and noteriety. Well, all I have to say is, its about time! Anvil are long overdue! With the movie, VH-1 Classic picked up "This Is Thirteen" for re-release on CD and vinyl with an additional bonus track. I picked up the vinyl version since I already own the original CD pressing direct from the band. The LP includes three bonus tracks including the new song "Thumb Hang" and two re-recorded classics.

Story of Anvil
Anvil – The Story of Anvil
(VH-1) 2009

- Anvil – The Story of Anvil
- Commentary by director Sacha Gervasi, "Lips," and Robb Reiner
- Extended interview with Metallica's Lars Ulrich
- Deleted scenes!
- "School Love" live with Sacha Gervasi on drums
Lips 2010
Steve 'Lips' Kudlow, 2010

Having been a die-hard Anvil fan since hearing “Metal on Metal” in 1983, I was excited to find out that there would be an Anvil documentary made. Who would have thought that the movie would be a hit and help re-launch the band’s career. “Anvil-The Story of Anvil” is more than a documentary. It’s a movie. Anvil comes off as hapless and loveable, but also come off looking like a real life Spinal Tap. There are just too many parallels to Spinal Tap to list, but there is the separation and reunion of the two best friends, getting lost on the way to a gig, playing before 174 people in a 10,000 capacity venue, inept management, and of course the over the top, ridiculous song lyrics. They don’t visit Elvis’ tomb, but the do visit Stonehenge. It’s all there and it’s all Anvil. On top of that, the movie is quite funny at times and heart-wrenching at others. My wife, who is not a metal fan, even enjoyed the movie. Steve "Lips" Kudlow and drummer Robb Reiner aren’t just characters, these are real guys who have waived their metal flag since their inception. In a nutshell, this is a movie about two guys who refuse to give up on a dream and we, the audience, get to take a very personal look inside these two guys. This movie is bound to make Anvil some new fans and rekindle the interest of some older fans.

And to toot my own horn, unlike the hordes of fans that forgot about them after “Forged in Fire”, this fan has been a hardcore fan since the beginning. I own all their albums on CD and most on vinyl as well. I even purchased “This is Thirteen” directly from the band before it was reissed by VH-1. Anvil are one of those bands I most wish I could see live. I’ve wanted to since I was a
kid in the 80’s. Here’s hoping the movie will vault them into enough of the limelight that they can get a good tour going and visit my part of the globe.

Also picked up the biography of Anvil. I had thought that it might just be the movie set to print, however, the book goes into much more detail about the band, the individual members, the recordings, touring, their victories and stuggles and their thoughts on what has transpired over the years with the band. It was a terrific read and I tore through the book in no time at all. The book includes several color pages with vintage photos of the band as well.

My video is autographed by Steve "Lips" Kudlow & drummer Robb .

Justice single Anvil  - Juggernaut Of Justice (The Single) (The End Records) 2011

1.   Juggernaut Of Justice (3:43)
2.   Fuken Eh!  (4:08)

Pre-release, 2-song single for "Juggernaut of Justice". Any Anvil fan, or fan of straight-forward, traditional heavy metal, should be pleased with these two songs. These sound like classic Anvil with  some of the best production they've ever had. This is heavy metal! The single itself is nothing more than a collectible for the Anvil fanatic, as the two songs included are both album tracks. Still, cool to have, being an Anvil fanatic myself.

Juggernaut of Justice Anvil  - Juggernaut Of Justice (The End Records) 2011

1.   Juggernaut Of Justice (3:41)
2.   When All Hell Breaks Loose  (3:11)
3.   New Orleans Voo Doo (4:25)
4.   On Fire (3:23)
5.   Fuken Eh! (4:08)
6.   Turn It Up (2:58)
7.   The Ride (3:!2)
8.   Not Afraid (3:44)
9.   Conspiracy (3:20)
10. Running (2:55)
11. Paranormal (7:04)
12. Swing Thing [instrumental] (3:00)
Lips Pick

Canadian metal warriors Anvil return with their first new album since their wildly successful documentary film "Anvil: The Story Of Anvil". As this site can attest, I am a longtime fan and have always followed Anvil throughout their career. Despite their new cult status, or second chance at fame, at the hand's of their movie, it's still the music that counts. Their fourteenth release, "Juggernaut Of Justice" finds the band still cranking out their brand of ferocious, traditional heavy metal with some thrash metal leanings. I mean, this is Anvil! Like them or hate them, you know what to expect from these Canuck metalheads. However, I think the band managed to up the ante with "Juggernaut of Justice". The songs are more hard-hitting than anything on "This Is Thirteen" and driven by a killer guitar tone. "Juggernaut Of Justice" was produced by Bob Marlette (Ozzy, Alice Cooper). Besides a vicious guitar tone, it's also nice to hear the bass guitar loud and clear along with the drums. While Lips and drummer Robb Reiner get all the press attention, Glenn Five is also an important part of the band's sound and has been for a long time. G5 also handles lead vocals on "The Ride" on this one, which is his first time in Anvil history.

Anvil have always managed to incorporate a sense of melody to their guitar driven heavy metal, and that is also the case here. However, the band even manages a bit of experimentation on this album. "Paranormal" is a seven-minute long doomy metal song that really allows Lips to let loose on some nice guitar leads. Also, "Swing Thing" is an instrumental with Lisa Joy Pimentel, wife of producer Bob Marlette plays horn, trumpet, trombone, clarinet and saxophone on this song. The instrumental also features some incredible drumming from Robb Reiner.

Overall, it's another solid slab of good 'ol Anvil heavy metal! I purchased the limited edition bundle from The End Records that included an autographed insert and a t-shirt!

Hope in Hell Anvil - Hope in Hell (The End Records) 2013

1. Hope in Hell (4:43)
2. Eat your Words (3:41)
3. Through With You (4:48)
4. The Fight Is Never Won (4:29)
5. Pay the Toll (2:48)
6. Flying (4:51)
7. Call of Duty (3:54)
8. Badass Rock n Roll (4:36)
9. Time Shows no Mercy (4:35)
10. Mankind Machine (4:14)
11. Shut the Fuck Up (3:38)
12. Hard Wired (3:09)
13. Fire at Will (4:04)

If the page full of Anvil reviews above this one don't speak volumes about how much of a fan of this band I am, nothing will. I always look forward to each new Anvil album with anticipation. Since "The Anvil Movie" Anvil's popularity has grown, but frankly I don't care how popular a band is. I've been an Anvil diehard since I first heard "Metal on Metal" back in the early 80's and I followed them through the lean and mean years right down through to purchasing "This Is Thirteen" as an independent release directly from Robb Reiner. My hope is that the band wouldn't change with growing popularity and pressure from labels and producers. I count on Anvil for simple, straight-forward, pounding, heavy metal. Thankfully that is exactly what the band has delivered even since the hit movie, and "Hope in Hell" is no exception. Anvil still sound like Anvil. There are still the slow, driving, heavy songs like the title track and "Call of Duty" as well as the songs that border thrash metal like "Eat Your Words" and "Shut the Fuck Up". ("Call of Duty" has a big "Forged in Fire" vibe.) What has improved, however, is the production. Bob Marlette (Alice Cooper, Iommi) who produced the band's last album "Juggernaut of Justice" delivers some of the best production on any Anvil yet. "Hope in Hell" is heavy, driven by a vicious guitar tone and Rob's pounding drums. If anyone wasn't a fan of Anvil in the past, I doubt that "Hope in Hell" will change their minds. However, those expecting Anvil to deliver the goods like they always have won't be let down. 

Anvil is Anvil Anvil - Anvil is Anvil (independent) 2016

1. Daggers and Rum (5:26)
2. Up, Down, Sideway (3:19)
3. Gun Control (4:22)
4. Die for a Lie (3:17)
5. Runaway Train (3:40)
6. Zombie Apocalypse (4:22)
7. It's Your Move (3:30)
8. Ambushed (3:22)
9. Fire on the Highway (4:35)
10. Run Like Hell (3:07)
11. Forgive Don't Forget (2:40)
12. Never Going to Stop (4:12)
13. You Don't Know What It's Like (3:31)

The aptly titled "Anvil is Anvil" is a statement about the band's sound. Not unlike Motorhead, Anvil refuse to change their sound. As Lips has stated in numerous interviews they would rather "stay faithful to ourselves."

I'm a self-professed Anvil fanatic. I've bought all their albums as new releases since discovering "Metal on Metal" back in the early 80's. I traveled to other states in the U.S. to see them perform. I've done Kickstarters for the band, including for this album. I've enjoyed most of their releases and "Anvil is Anvil" is no exception. However, the first track to be released to the public for this album was "Die for a Lie" and to be quite frank, I didn't like it. The song is weak and the lyrics are weaker. You don't have to be religious to get tired of hearing metal bands complain about religion, as if these bands are somehow less hypocritical than people who have faith in God. If these bands don't believe in God, fine, but why constantly rip on people that have faith? While there are hypocrites and deceivers in every walk of life, many people of faith are genuinely good people who would give you the shirt off their back if you needed it, and many of them are Anvil fans as well. On top of this, the whole idea of people dying for religion and religion being the main cause of wars over the decades is a fallacy. The truth is non-religious motivations such as politics, dictators, naturalistic philosophies, etc. bear the blame for nearly all of human wars. However, even if you agree with Kudlow's ideology in this song, the lyrics come off as rather amateurish, and obviously Anvil are not amateurs. After hearing the whole album I am not sure why this track was chosen as the first track.

The album starts off with a wicked pirate shanty titled “Daggers and Rum”. Now this track is classic Anvil. It's fun, it's heavy, it's metal, it's everything anyone would expect from this band. After all, Anvil is Anvil! I found the album as a whole to flow well, with the exception of the aforementioned "Die For a Lie". However there are several standout cuts. "Up, Down, Sideway" immediately reminded me of the Yardbirds classic, "Over Under Sideways Down". Of course the two songs have nothing to do with each other, but the title just had me singing the chorus to the old standard in my head. Other standouts include the politically charged “Gun Control”, the speed metal track “Fire on the Highway” and the stomping “Runaway Train”, which reminded me of the classic 80's Anvil sound. As well. “Ambushed” has that classic Anvil heavy groove and a fist-pumping, sing-along chorus. Perhaps this song should have been released as the teaser track. 

Anvil is Anvil was produced by Martin "Mattes" Pfeiffer (U.D.O.) at the Redhead 4 Studios in Pulheim near Cologne, Germany, so the recording is outstanding and in fact may be their best to date.

I think every Anvil album has had standout tracks; "Metal on Metal", "Winged Assassins", "Mad Dog", "Bushpig", "Old School", "Speed of Sound", "Plenty of Power" etc. "Anvil is Anvil" has thrown “Daggers and Rum” and “Ambushed” into that mix. As the title suggests, Anvil are what they are. No surprises here.

Anvil is Anvil was fan-funded and was released in limited quantities on CD by the band independent of any labels. However, the album was picked up by SPV for international release and will be released on vinyl and CD. Supposedly the band's version has two bonus tracks. Press releases for the SPV version included "Never Going to Stop", so "You Don't KNow What It's Like" may very well be exclusive to the indie release.

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