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Islington Academy, London 15 June 2010
people knew that this gig was still still taking place tonight.
Originally LA rockers Ratt were to headline but once again cancelled due
to hernia operations or drunken boat antics depending which story you
believe to be true, not that it bothered any of the true metallers here
are split into two categories. There are the long grey haired
rockers, now in their forties who first witnessed Anvil back in the
early eighties when they released a trio of now classic albums before
the band disappeared from this shores for some twenty years, and a much
younger audience who only first heard of the band after watching the
acclaimed film 'The Story Of Anvil', an award winning film documenting
the passion of a band who refuse to give in.
It was a
busy night in London for gigs with Hellyeah, Enuff Z'Nuff and Aerosmith
all plying us to empty our wallets, but my money was on Anvil and
Girlschool who are always a winning bet for a good night out.
Back in 1981
Anvil supported Girlschool on a tour of Canada, tonight the
tables are turned and the South London girls are back on a perfect
double billing. Girlschool were my favourite band at the recent
Hard Rock Hell bash with some perfectly honed tunes and the constant
chirpy chattering banter of the girls in-between the songs makes you
feel that you are at home with your big sister who has invited her
pissed up mates round to the house.
bands paying tribute to Ronnie James Dio in recent weeks, the girls go
one better by playing 'I-Spy' from their latest album 'Legacy', a song
that actually featured vocals from Ronnie and riffs from Iommi. A
set that was filled up with all our favourites, but a hit 'n run set of
forty minutes does not do Girlschool enough justice and I look foward to
seeing them do a headline show again where I hope they can blend in more
recent numbers with those classic tunes, but until then, this suited me
are clearly enjoying their second chance in the spotlight with the
loveable Lips smiling throughout, happy to be playing to an adoring
crowd on foreign soil yet again. Lips looks directly into my eyes
and holds up five fingers and one thumb and waves them twice to indicate
that the next song is '666', on the third wave it's five fingers and for
the sixth digit he uses his raised middle finger, the cheeky sod.
The hard 'n
heaviness of 'School Love' is pure metal thrashing - written before
there was even a thing called thrash. ''Did i pay my sister back?
You're sure hell i did.'' As Lips refers to the $10,000 dollars
his sis lent him in the film to make 'This Is Thirteen' as the band give
us the title track.
Dio gets another dedication ''I was listening to Black Sabbath when I
was a kid'' says Lips, ''I'm now in my fifties and I'm still listening
to Black Sabbath'' before going into the doomy 'Thumb Hang'', the first
song Lips wrote with drummer Robb Reiner when they were kids and has
finally been resurrected.
song of the night though is a monstrous ten minute version of 'Mothra'
complete with Lips bringing out the infamous dildo for some slide
I wish the
band would play some more material from their wilderness years because
they have produced some quality that needs to be heard. Although
we do get 'White Rhino' which features some powerhouse drumming from
Reiner which shows why he is such an admired musician, and also the Ted
Nugenty feel of 'Mad Dog' from 87's underrated 'Strength Of Steel' LP.
knows 'Metal On Metal' which goes down a storm and is one of five tracks
from that seminal album of the same name, that is played tonight.
We only get the one encore, a breathless version of the gonzoid
'Jackhammer', a track that pre-dates the tomfoolery antics of Anthrax by
a few years which influenced the New Yorkers so much when making the
'Spreading The Disease' album.
With a new
album already in the can, get set for 'Juggernault Of Justice' when it's
released because Anvil are a band that should truly be treasured.
The band are the real deal.
Set List: March Of The Crabs / 666 / School Love / This Is Thirteen /
Mothra / Flying Blind / Thumb Hang / White Rhino / Mad Dog / Forged In
Fire / Metal On Metal ...encore.. Jackhammer
by Mark Taylor
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