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Anvil's Robb Reiner: "It's no Joke!!!..The creation of an Anvil bong a is marketing genius product. Currently working on making them for consumer consumption…"

Interview with Robb Reiner from Anvil
by Lior "Steinmetal" Stein at 01 February 2020, 12:04 AM

Going for the big bong, being deterministic about something that might not seem that important to others, or does it really? The Canadian Heavy Metal legend, Anvil, have been constant with their music, yet also in the same breath, continue to give their whole within a rather wide margin. Coming up with a new album, via AFM Records, "Legal At Last", their dedication and toughness continue. Steinmetal had a talk with founding drummer, Robb Reiner, about the new bong and album, and more…

Hello Robb, how have you been sir? It is such a tremendous honor having you for this interview for Metal Temple online Magazine, a true privilege

Maintaining the same energy and devotion, as you have been all those years, even in harsher and harder times, Anvil sends a curveball towards society’s pinky smothered face with “Legal At Last”. First, I wanted to explore your saying regarding the title, so is it mainly to provoke your local Canadian Mainstream, which Anvil, as largely most Metal bands, has never been part of? 

The title’s intention represents nothing more than in Canada marijuana is finally legal since Anvil is a Canadian treasure to metal fans….

Thinking about it, since Metal has always been in a different sphere than most of the musical genres, especially those directly connected to the Mainstream, why do you care that much if you are being liked by the public or not? You have your own fanbase worldwide, and folks from our comfort zone are still getting to know you.

In General, its satisfying when a product is embraced beyond a cult level…. Anvil is happy with all it has achieved with its 42 years of presence including its prodigious output of musical works.

What’s that story with the Anvil bong? I am pretty curious, is it a sort of a way to joke around or is this thing does really exist like the Jack and Coke, which is the Lemmy drink?

It's no Joke!!!..The creation of an Anvil bong a is marketing genius product. Currently working on making them for consumer consumption. Every anvil release we put the Anvil in a idea situation…this time it's a Bong!.. brilliant.

To be honest, I never really connected the bong to the album being “Legal At Last”, because I also know the Anvil sense for nonsense. Actually, I looked at from more of a social idiom. It is legal at last to decide your own future, what comes next tomorrow, your chance to make a difference in the world. Did it ever occur to you or is it really mainly for the sake of humorism?

Well here with "Legal At Last"… there is no nonsense just the real deal… Anvil means musical kick in your face business straight out…. truly we always have… the tongue and cheek days are long gone.

All that we had in mind was in Canada marijuana is finally legal…. so an Anvil bong is a fitting concept… and the band has gained a more legal presence of sorts as well in the last 12 years internationally. Yeah the band has had fans all along just in the last decade, the base has grown expectantly.

“Legal At Last” is all over the place with its huge amount of criticism, whether from social decay, plagiarism against the week, legalization of drugs (which are you pro) and the environment among the many. So, if things look grim, where do you see us going forward from here? Where do you think that line will be drawn when there will be no more future?

Well the lyrics address many current social conscious issues of times currently …true…. it's about opening one's eyes and minds around them…..

Recently, you stated that “Legal At Last” is just another Anvil album, musically I see it as one of your diverse exports. Anvil is more than a mere Heavy Metal band on “Legal At Last”. Do you believe that with this new album there is some sort of evolution in Anvil’s perception of its Metal direction?

Anvil is evolving within its own artistic rights… Anvil has always been about Rock N' Roll / Metal / Hard Rock type sound not withstanding that Anvil has consistently produced diverse style tracks with our releases…"Legal At Last" nails that notion again solid!

Would you say that you tried some new things with “Legal At Last” or simply just remained your honest selves with one thing leading to another, and here we are with yet another Anvil album?

Yeah…that sums it up!  Anvil Is Anvil!!

In comparison to “Pounding The Pavement”, your previous album, where does “Legal At Last” stand in terms of magnitude and influence? Would you say that you have learned a thing or two for “Legal At Last” that weren’t done on the early effort?

Writing every album has inspirations from within the Anvil style…. we continually learn what works and doesn’t. Anvil grow musically in its own world with each release, never losing the anvil sound and style! Anvil is today very focused in on what Anvil really is musically.

I will make it a little harder on you for just a little bit, so bear with me. With the market in the last one and a half decade, swarming with albums, especially due to technology that enables the swarm, what do you think makes “Legal At Last” in particular so unique within this vast sea of albums?

Everything about it is not following any current trends and never will… it's completely unique… Anvil Is Anvil!

How would you describe the songwriting and arrangements process of “Legal At Last”?

The process remains the same throughout the years…Riffs are presented …arrangements worked out. Song titles explored…lyrics written. Then entire song selection is very well rehearsed prior to entering recording studio…We learned years back that good preparation yields strong confident output.

While writing the riffing for “Legal At Last”, did you have musical references or rather what motivated you to come up with some of the jewels on this gem?

All songs come from organic innocent creation… in a nut shell.

Within the album I found two particular numbers that shot me back to the 70s, “Plastic In Paradise” and “Said And Done”, drowning in the pits of doom, where Black Sabbath was created. I could only guess that you are a strong Black Sabbath fan, as those two could have been part of the old British legacy. What is your appreciation of these tracks? How did it feel to take Anvil to such a gloom, yet groovy, direction?

For Anvil, Black Sabbath music has been a great source of inspiration in general. And Anvil type doom is a style the band excels in and love’s expressing.

As opposed to the slow and doomy offensive, you delivered a speedy bomb in the image of “Food For The Vulture”, which felt heavily 80s with its riffing. In its theme, this song is quite extreme, what led you this understanding described in this song? Do you think that future releases would maintain this kind of bound by steel, yet with a sense of freedom, Metal?

Anvil has always had a speed metal type essence within its style…so yes there will be more in the future one would expect.

 “Nabbed In Nebraska” really killed me as I have been a strong fan of “Metal On Metal”, it seems that you really wanted to take your listeners decades back in time to those golden years right? Would you argue that it wasn’t intentional?

Yeah…far from intentional…some tracks in the end …turn out like they turn out….Nabbed is true 100% Anvil nothing hard to recognize about that. When a band has a style, then that's what is heard.

What do you think are Anvil’s main challenges when it comes to the support of “Legal At Last”, and I might even ask in the coming years right before you decided that a new album is in order?

Challenges…touring as much as possible …and staying as healthy as long is that's allowed.

Talking about Metal music, one cannot deny that it has been beyond music, yet the devotion that it inspires made it a sort of a religion, a way of life. How do you see this Metal phenomenon? Is it more than a cause to bang one’s head or simply just to listen to quality tunes?

The music lets folks release their daily lives issues out with hard hitting sounds…it's a positive therapy! In Europe especially metal is a life style for many! The way they dress, their homes reflect the metal themes it offers…

Where are we going to see Anvil in 2020? Will you be invading to Europe this time around?

Yea Anvil euro tour starts Feb 26 till Apr 30th…53 shows.

Robb, many thanks for taking the time for this interview, it is amazing that you could do this. Thanks for such a great offering as “Legal At Last”. All the best.



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