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Articles Home » 2013 Articles » Anvil - 2013 Hope In Hell
Anvil - 2013 Hope In Hell

ALBUM: Hope In Hell
LABEL: The End Records (Nth Amer), SPV/Steamhammer (Eur)
SERIAL: EDRE3102 (CD), EDRE3101 (LP) * SPV 265252 CD
YEAR: 2013


LINEUP: Lips - vocals, guitar * Sal Italiano - bass * Robb Reiner - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Hope In Hell * 02 Eat Your Words * 03 Through With You * 04 The Fight Is Never Won * 05 Pay The Toll * 06 Flying * 07 Call Of Duty * 08 Badass Rock N Roll * 09 Time Shows No Mercy * 10 Mankind Machine * 11 Shut The Fuck Up * 12 Hard Wired (bonus) * 12 Fire At Will (bonus)



One of the best metal albums of 2011 was Anvil's 'Juggernaut Of Justice' which received a considerable amount of praise here at GDM. With new bassist Sal Italiano joining the ranks, Anvil is back for another shot at glory, with Bob Marlette once again handling production duties. It feels redundant mentioning it, but the 2008 documentary which gained Anvil so much acclaim is still working wonders for them obviously, as they're touring and recording constantly. That said they have a lot to live up to matching the heaviness and consistency of 'Juggernaut.'. After listening to this album repeatedly it's clear they've fallen slightly short of the mark, with several average tracks watering the product down.

The Songs
One thing this album does well is capture the feel of the early Anvil albums, something 'Juggernaut.'. did well in places also. Listening to 'Eat Your Words' is like taking a trip back to 1982 and 'Metal On Metal', recalling 'Jackhammer' especially. All these years later and the riffs are still as potent and the speed is still a factor too. This is the best track by a mile. 'Through With You' is laughable only because the main riff is a total rip off of 'Smoke On The Water'. This is something I'd expect from a bunch of 14 year olds but not Anvil. Much better is the surging 'The Fight Is Never Won' which expounds upon the bands tried and tested 'overcoming the odds' themes and does it with some supremely galloping riffs. Equally as strong is 'Pay The Toll' which again revisits the early years, particularly Lips' guitar work, with that early 80's feel. 'Call Of Duty' is lumbering at best and along with world travel tale 'Flying' doesn't quite get going, both routine metal cuts without great hooks. 'Badass Rock 'N' Roll' isn't the anthem you'd expect, but it's still vintage Anvil and more true to their roots than other veteran metal bands these days. Lips urges us to 'hold on to our youth, you're only as young as you feel' on 'Time Shows No Mercy' where the lyrics are more interesting than the music admittedly. It never gets out of first gear, just meandering along unfortunately. Things pick up again with 'Shut The Fuck Up' thanks to the guttural riffs and the bonus tracks 'Hard Wired' and 'Fire At Will' are better than a few of the regular album tracks, mostly because they are faster.

In Summary
A solid effort indeed but I don't hear the urgency of the previous album, despite some new modern day Anvil classics. It has all the ingredients that Anvil fans expect and it's true heavy metal all the way, something Anvil have never wavered from. That's all you can really ask for and whether this finds an audience aside from Anvil fanatics is open to question, but at this point I'm not sure Anvil care; they're still at the top their game after three decades of toil and commitment.

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