I am watching Anvil! The Story of Anvil, and it is breaking my heart.

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I adore this movie, but did indeed miss an honest opinion about the quality of Anvil's music. Their third album was released in 1983, was killer, and ahead of the game. For some reason it took the band 4 years to follow it up. In those 4 years metal expanded considerably. Trash metal happened, death metal, doom metal... hardcore and metal got mixed, funk became part of the equation, etc. When Anvil dropped their new album, they sounded very old fashioned. What also didn't help was that every Anvil album had one or two overly poppy songs and that their new album was now made up almost exclusively of these. I think that this is what damaged the band's career. Not bad luck or what have you. Just bad management. All the follow-up albums are also mediocre at best. It is nice, but not nice enough, and definitely not as good and special as their first three albums were. I wish these guys all the success in the world, they are sweet and lovely, but once the documentary becomes old news, they have to keep the momentum with the quality of their new releases. I seriously wonder if they are able to pull that off.

Sebastian (Royal Mermaid Mover), Monday, 13 December 2010 01:38 (six years ago) Permalink

three months pass...

In re the previous post -- now you can judge:


Thing is, by just staying at doing what they do, they sound perfectly placed for all the retro metal worship now.

Ned Raggett, Sunday, 13 March 2011 05:24 (six years ago) Permalink

Yeah, this is the best Anvil song I've heard in a good 24 years at least.

A. Begrand, Sunday, 13 March 2011 05:32 (six years ago) Permalink

A detailed look at the new record:


A. Begrand, Monday, 14 March 2011 03:38 (six years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

The Story Of Anvil is on netflix streaming now! I'm going in.

til the sound of my voice will haint u (Jon Lewis), Monday, 23 April 2012 20:45 (five years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

Still streaming for another week. Watched it last night, I'm with some dude, sorry to say.

Beam Me Up (I Feel Like Being A) Doomsday Machine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Friday, 17 May 2013 13:17 (four years ago) Permalink


Ned Raggett, Friday, 17 May 2013 13:45 (four years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

saw them twice last weekend. Lips plays a guitar solo with a vibrator.

Hammer Smashed Bagels, Friday, 20 February 2015 02:06 (two years ago) Permalink

"Mothra" is dope live

Hammer Smashed Bagels, Friday, 20 February 2015 02:06 (two years ago) Permalink

saw them twice last weekend. Lips plays a guitar solo with a vibrator.

what a jawdropping revelation to people who only know them from this movie

oochie wally (clean version) (sic), Friday, 20 February 2015 03:56 (two years ago) Permalink

actually hadn't seen the movie prior to seeing them, didn't realize they showed him doing this in the flick.

Hammer Smashed Bagels, Saturday, 21 February 2015 04:29 (two years ago) Permalink

Yeah, I dunno. Their music's fine, but it's not terribly interesting. Compared to the artistic advances their peers were making in the mid to late eighties they seem to have always just been chugging along to the same groove.

― A brownish area with points (chap), Monday, 13 December 2010 00:58 (4 years ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

many of their more successful peers did exactly the same thing!

Hammer Smashed Bagels, Saturday, 21 February 2015 04:31 (two years ago) Permalink

I do kinda wish they were a four piece again tho. that kinda 80s heavy metal sounds weird with only one guitar live (unlike doom, which would work fine in that setting)

their new bass player is cool, he looks like an ex-hockey player. Robb's drum solo was awesome.

Hammer Smashed Bagels, Saturday, 21 February 2015 04:33 (two years ago) Permalink

I always wondered what they meant when they said that most of their albums sounded like shit. The songs or the production?

I did find it odd and a bit disappointing that a fan made film didn't include more of their music or discuss the merits of more of their albums.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Saturday, 21 February 2015 15:52 (two years ago) Permalink

in context I think he meant the production of the albums, but I'm sure he was probably also talking about the songs, because in recent interviews he's said ultimately the production doesn't matter if your songs are shit.

Hammer Smashed Bagels, Saturday, 21 February 2015 15:54 (two years ago) Permalink

Would be nice to see a comprehensive interview, album by album.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Saturday, 21 February 2015 15:59 (two years ago) Permalink

he even admitted in an interview recently that the fans mostly come to shows for the first three albums, and that they base their setlists on that and just cherrypick the rest of the setlist based on their newer material. I wouldn't be surprised if the comments on those late-80s/mid-90s albums were "don't remember it", "oh, that one", "hmm I remember one of those songs".

Hammer Smashed Bagels, Saturday, 21 February 2015 16:01 (two years ago) Permalink

he also confirmed that they no longer have regular jobs, that Anvil provides all their income now, so apparently the post-movie bump has maintained itself, though I will say they played to very small crowds both times I saw them. but Lips looked like a toothy grinning kid who just picked up a guitar for the first time, it's impossible not to enjoy that.

Robb Reiner's drum solo was dope too.

Hammer Smashed Bagels, Saturday, 21 February 2015 16:06 (two years ago) Permalink

I don't know how anyone thought this film could be a hoax. There was plenty of evidence the band existed on the internet with lots of fan discussion and it would have been an incredible feat to fake all that old footage with the band looking much younger and get actors who were that convincing.

One of my favourite parts is when Lips goes around the metal bands looking to talk about old times. One guy has a good story and another guy doesn't remember him at all.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Saturday, 21 February 2015 17:21 (two years ago) Permalink

yeah, Vinnie Appice looked mortified but it was cool seeing Lips still be a fanboy at his age. Glad they didn't selectively edit that sequence for melodrama, they could have gone one or two ways with it, ie, purposefully only showing the "wtf" reactions of the other musicians, or the opposite, just showing the Twisted Sister/Motorhead meetups.

Hammer Smashed Bagels, Saturday, 21 February 2015 17:35 (two years ago) Permalink

I also think it's a little weird that in all of the Motorhead/Lemmy soundbites it never got mentioned that Lemmy asked Lips to replace Fast Eddie Clarke in Motorhead, and Lips declined. kind of a big detail!

Hammer Smashed Bagels, Saturday, 21 February 2015 17:36 (two years ago) Permalink

I do wonder how many bands are in Anvil's situation before the film. I mean there are hundreds of great bands who never were able to give up the day job but I don't know how unusual it is to have to go back to your day job after diminished success and keep releasing albums that long.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Saturday, 21 February 2015 17:49 (two years ago) Permalink

yeah, didn't Northside split up only recently?

Mark G, Saturday, 21 February 2015 19:29 (two years ago) Permalink

I think many old metal musicians avoid this because they subsidize their livelihood by playing in/touring with multiple bands at a time. lots of long-standing metal bands would ostensibly lose members over time, so you'd see people like Sharlee d'Angelo, an otherwise unexceptional bass player, filling these roles and cashing in by being a part of an already established act (I think one year he played on like five albums I bought). I think even Dave Lombardo admitted to joining Testament for the paycheck in the late 90s. And then there was Savatage, who, ok, were on Atlantic for years, which helped, but managed to help create a spinoff band (Trans-Siberian Orchestra) that was lucrative.

not that this was a road to riches, mind you, but if you're getting touring/merchandise incomes, possibly even a songwriting credit or two from more than one act, you have a better chance of staying afloat and not having to work a day job.

but someone like Lips would never be into that - Anvil is really an extension of him (hell, the band was originally named after him).

Hammer Smashed Bagels, Saturday, 21 February 2015 19:38 (two years ago) Permalink

got Juggernaut of Justice last night and really like it. As far as their post-movie albums, This is Thirteen and Juggernaut are the best, but the newish one, Hope in Hell, is a bit of a dropoff. There's tunes on it for sure but nothing like on the previous two.

Hammer Smashed Bagels, Sunday, 22 February 2015 16:01 (two years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

so far the new one (terribly titled Anvil is...Anvil) is actually pretty fun! the opening track is a cornball "arrgh we're pirates" song, the second one seems musically like an homage to Motorhead.

way better than the cheesy blandness of Hope in Hell. Nothing surprising but hey I will take authentic classic heavy metal anytime.

you are no man. take the balls. (Neanderthal), Sunday, 28 February 2016 01:00 (one year ago) Permalink

third song is called "Gun Control". really cheesy 'message' song.

you are no man. take the balls. (Neanderthal), Sunday, 28 February 2016 01:02 (one year ago) Permalink

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