Anvil – “Hope In Hell”

Anvil – “Hope In Hell” (Steamhammer / SPV)

And so the Anvil juggernaut continues….like Frankenstein’s monster resurrected by Sacha Gervasi in their infamous rockumentary, Canada’s never say die 80s metallers soldier on with perhaps their most prophetically titled album. Having ousted longtime bassist Glenn Five, Lips and Robb Reiner are now kicking out the jams with Sal Italiano (ex Cities and longtime Anvil fan friend) – and what can I say, against all the odds, Anvil’s comeback is tighter than ever before! Robb’s drumming is still par excellence – and now with monstrous cowbell – as Lips’s riffs continue to exploit every line in the metal bible of riffola as Sal adds his muscle into making a big bass sound. I’ve always wondered if Anvil were better off as a quartet but this line-up finally answers the question – no! The other thing that jumps out is that “Hope In Hell” is easily the band’s fastest and certainly most energetic album for a while. There’s a new vigor in songs like ‘The Fight Is Never Won’, ‘Call Of Duty’ and ‘Shut The Fuck Up’ – typical Anvil ha ha – but the band’s sound remains timeless and much as critics may find it hard to accept, Lips and Reiner are never gonna change so get over it people. Even more so, “Hope In Hell” is probably the album in recent years closest to those early 80s classics that the band churned out, and this gives us a higher hope that the band are firmly on course to top their legacy.

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