Anvil - Hope In Hell

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Another year, another Anvil album, and it's more of the same for the loveable Canadian jokers who just won't quit. There's certainly a place for their tongue-in-cheek brand of classic metal, and their persistently cheerful attitude is always welcome; not everything has to be so serious. Hope In Hell has the same problems as more or less every other Anvil album. The guitars are too bright, so it's not heavy enough, most of the lyrics are poor, and some of the songs are just too simplistic. But it also has the same positives, like the band always sounding at their best on slower songs like the title track, and Steve "Lips" Kudrow's guitar solos, which remain the most consistently good thing about the band. There is of course plenty of their trademark humour in Shut The Fuck Up and Done With You (with its "See you next Tuesday" chorus), and when they get it right on tracks like Eat Your Words, Pay The Toll and Badass Rock 'n' Roll, they're still capable of memorable, fun metal songs, as always though they just need to hit upon that formula more often per album than they already do, filler like Mankind Machine and Flying shouldn't be here. Some editions will contain two bonus tracks, Fire At Will and Hardwired, which are again more of the same and it's difficult to really see why those two are the b-sides and not some of the other tracks which made the main album. Nevertheless, if more Anvil music is required, Hope In Hell delivers, and provides a couple more good tracks for the live setlist too.

Written by Andy Lye
More: 2013, Albums, Heavy Metal, Quick.Play Reviews,

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