That's another legendary metal band I can cross off of my list of bands I've never seen live. Anvil are on some kind of late career surge thanks to THAT movie of course which has propelled them from more or less the gutter of metal up to a respectable position, where they are treated like some kind of metal royalty at all their gigs.
Apparently as Lips explained from the stage, the last time they played the Underworld, they were actually supporting a Pantera cover band! The mind boggles how desperate things must have been at that time. And here we are at the same venue and there Underworld has a pretty healthy attendance of around 400 or so which is not bad at all.
First up was Lauren Harris and her band, to play some simple melodic rock. I've seen her with Maiden twice before and her songs were so average I nearly fell asleep. She's a very pretty lass though and perhaps the hottest singer the famous Underworld stage has ever had the privelege of hosting, but we are here for music in the end and so she must please us aurally rather than visually if you catch my drift. She was actually plugging her new album last night with 5 or so numbers plundered from said record. Actually I must admit the new songs sounded much better than the ones on the debut album. Her voice is still the weak link for me but the songs were not bad.
At 9.15 Anvil sauntered on and immediately you notice the shit eating grin all over Lips' face. The guy seems to have a perma-grin etched on to his face like he's The Joker or something! As a guitarist and vocalist Lips has limited ability IMO. Rob Reiner is a very solid drummer though and the bass player provides a solid backbone for the trio. They played a number of songs from throughout their career with the more energetic material garnering the best response from the gathered Anvilites. Jackhammer was a particularly cool track.
Anvil are one of those bands that have some cool tunes and riffs but the problem is their songs can soon start to sound dull after awhile and like I said Lips' average vocals don't help the cause either. But I guess it's all about the metal vibe with this band. Metal on Metal had everyone singing at the top of their voices as Lips called it the anthem of Heavy Metal. They are getting their umpteenth bite at the cherry thanks to the film and good luck to them. Lips is also a very cool and funny guy with some great one liners. He could unplug his guitar and just tell old stories and the punters would be happy!
Not the greatest or most exciting gig in the world but I guess it was just about being there and witnessing the latest leg of the rebirth of the legendary Canucks this time.
Anvil - not the greatest band in the world by a long stretch but the band with the biggest heart.