Anvil - Juggernaut of Justice

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There are plenty of people who still want to believe Anvil have just been unlucky. Fuelled by the well-received Spinal Tap-ish movie Canada's most famous metal failures found a new level of sympathy amongst the metal community. But after so many failures, mistakes and just plain bad albums, surely it's more than just luck. And besides, how unsuccessful can a band who have been able to release no less than 15 original studio albums in 30 years be considered? That's better than 90% of the metal bands out there, even if most of them aren't very good. Despite everything they are, on occasion, capable of writing a really good metal song. They proved that with the title track from This Is Thirteen, but their production of genuinly great songs really has been at a rate of one per album, at best, giving them enough good tracks throughout their 30 year career to fill just one CD. They improve that ratio here with as many as four good songs; the astonishingly monstrous New Orleans Voodoo, at a push the title track, the early Sabbath rip-off Paranormal, and Conspiracy. The rest is either third-rate Dio (On Fire), KISS (Fuckeneh!, Turn It Up), Motörhead (Running) or Iron Maiden (The Ride). And just how many songs about "never going away" does one band need anyway? We get it, you're not going to quit even though you probably should. It's not all terrible. Even a couple of the creatively bad songs are kind of fun in a mindless-metal kind of way, and Lips' solos are surprisingly tasteful throughout, especially on Paranormal. This is actually their best album to date, remarkably, but they really, really need more of the good songs, else they'll never be taken seriously.

Written by Andy Lye
More: 2011, Albums, Heavy Metal, Quick.Play Reviews,

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