Intervju med Robb Reiner i Anvil!
Verklighetens Spinal Tap har en ny platta ute, "Juggernaut of justice" och jag tog tillfället i akt och ringde upp Robb för några veckor sedan.
Han berättade bl a om nya plattan och att det finns planer på en andra film om bandet. Personligen har jag aldrig förstått mig på Anvil och tycker väl mest att den givna förklaringen till att de aldrig blev stora, är för att de inte var speciellt bra.
Robb: Hi Nick!
Hey Robb, how are you?
Robb: Good, brother! Talk loud, man! Make sure you talk loud!
I will! How´s Canada these days?
Robb: It´s fucking super hot here today, man!
Same as here then. First off, did you feel a lot of pressure recording this album, considering all the hype around the movie, that this is a make or break album?
Robb: Well, let´s be realistic! Of course we felt no pressure, because we had the material in hand all along and our mission was to make the most true to the classic form Anvil album we´ve ever made and we had to make sure that we stood up and that we were gonna be counted this time, musically. We were looking forward to the challenge more than the pressure, you know. We had no choice but to do it and I think that we´re definitely are gonna be counted this time.
These songs on the new album, how old are the oldest ones? When did you start writing for it?
Robb: We wrote the whole album in 2009. As the movie was getting huge… listen! The movie´s been seen by 88 million people now and sold 10 million DVD’s or whatever, so while all that shit was happening we had about… before we toured last year, we had about basically a year to write the album, so in 2009 we wrote the album and we recorded it last fall in Dave Grohl´s studio 606. Bob Marlette produced the record and he did a fantastic job and I couldn´t be more excited about the record! It´s got cutting edge material on it and it´s got really, really classic Anvils stuff on it and Lipp´s never sounded as good as he does on this record!
How come you ended up working with Bob Marlette? Was that something you chose or the record company?
Robb: No, no, no! Our manager. We knew that Chris Tsangarides could not take us to the next level and we´ve known that for quite a while. Chris is a great producer and he´s my friend and all that, but he´s not the man to take us to the next level and our manager suggested a few new people and we picked Bob out of the list. He was a great choice and he´s an amazing, amazing producer and he´s a songwriter and he really cares about making it right.
Did he help out writing songs and stuff like that?
Robb: No, he didn´t write the songs, he just adjusted a lot of stuff, like for example we have a song on the record called “Turn it up”. It was initially called “I´m going deaf” and he said to Lipps “Listen man! Shave 40 years off that song and call it Turn it up!”. See what I mean?
Robb: It was just stuff like that and plus with the vocals, he worked meticulously with Lipps to get him to sing at where he sounds the best. His vocals are not strained at all and it sounds amazing!
After this and everything that happened, did you feel that you got a lot more attention from different record companies and how come you ended up with Steamhammer?
Robb: Listen, we´re super famous now! Anvil has become worldwide super famous, not just famous but super famous. It´s unbelievable how famous we got! The story got told and the story needed to get told and by becoming the story, a lot of people didn´t realize a lot of the truths about Anvil and yeah, that brought a lot of people that are in the business to the band, to become modified rock stars. We have a great team around us now and we have the best management any rock band can have. We have a great rock and roll agent, we´ve got a record company and we´ve been touring nonstop for years now. Last year we played to a total of more than 400.000 people and it´s not stopping. The movie part will never stop. It will keep going forever!
Right! How come you ended up at Dave Grohl´s studio? Did he suggest it?
Robb: Yeah! Dave is a good friend of ours and Dave offered up his studio and he basically put it to us like “If you guys don´t record your album in my studio, I don´t wanna be your friend anymore!”. (laughs) We said “No problem, Dave! We´ll make the album there!”. (laughs)
Did you ever feel like… that with everything that happened with the movie, that why did it take a movie to put you on the next level?
Robb: You know what? Life is funny and that´s just how it works. I would have never thought in a million years, that it would take a movie to open the doors for us. Who would´ve thought? That was the beautiful part about it. The movie idea was the director Sacha´s (Gervasi) idea. He came up with the idea and we just went along with it. You know, we wanted to tell a story and the world needed to know the whole career of Anvil. Our music made a difference and it inspired a whole generation of music that everybody veered and nobody knew that. We had to get everything told, we had to tell the whole story. I´m glad it did it. But listen, without the music there would be no movie, so it´s the music that got the movie made and it´s a beautiful thing. The movie now, has inspired hundreds of other bands to make movies! Everybody´s making a fucking movie now! I mean, even Lemmy has a fucking movie! Everybody saw that and “Oh, my god, look at this! It´s the biggest thing ever! The biggest rock movie ever!”. Believe it or not, it´s true! I´m happy about it. How can I not be happy? It opened the doors for us and we walked in and we had to deliver the record of our career and we´re a great band anyway. People are discovering it when we play live!
This new record deal then? Have you signed a multi album deal or is it just album by album?
Robb: Well, this current contract is actually for two albums and our whole back catalog is gonna get re-released and another “Best of” record. All that is gonna come out over the next little while and of course we´re gonna make another studio album. We´re gonna keep rocking until we can´t! You´re wealthy as long as you´re healthy!
True! Who did the artwork for the album?
Robb: Our good buddy Schinsel (?) in Germany. A German guy, man! We came up with the idea and actually for this particular album, Lipps had the brainstorm for the idea of the actual concept and this guy in Germany has made our last four or five covers.
Could you ever make an album cover without an anvil on it?
Robb: No, I don´t think so! If we did that, everybody would… what would everybody say? We´ve got lots of ideas. The anvil must be there.
You did a Canadian tour not long ago, how was that?
Robb: That was incredible! We did 21 dates coast to coast here in Canada and it was a sellout tour in our own backyard. It was unbelievable! Even in Canada we are now famous! It was a historic tour!
Cool! How long will you be touring for this album? Do you have any idea?
Robb: I hope we tour for three years! I hope so. I don´t know. We just started now and I hope we can tour for a while.
Ok. I´ve been listening to the album and the title track has a bit of a Judas Priest feeling to it, at least to me.
Robb: Ok. Well, that´s cool! I think it sounds like classic Anvil, but Judas Priest, that´s good too!
Since you mentioned the back catalog and re-releasing it, are there gonne be bonus tracks, demos and stuff like that?
Robb: Yeah, there might be some weird unreleased stuff. I´m not sure yet, you know. We´re gonna repackage it and remaster everything and we might have like some obscure live recording. We´re not sure yet.
Any plans of doing a live DVD?
Robb: There´s been talk about it for years and if that happens it´s spontaneous and on the fly, but after the “Juggernaut of justice” winds down, there could be a chance that we might actually do an “Anvil 2”.
Robb: We wanna show the world all the success that Anvil´s had and it´ll be called “Anvil 2: The quest for world peace”, so there´s a whole lot of things that are gonna happen.
You guys are just exploding all over the place!
Robb: Yeah, listen man! It´s our time, you know! We´ve worked long and hard and it´s time for us to have more fun than we´ve already had.
Have you met a lot of other rock and rollers and rock stars that come up to you, that you didn´t know were fans or are fans all of a sudden?
Robb: Yeah, endless! Where do you want me to start? Jeff Beck, Ron Wood, Ian Anderson, Alice Cooper… I mean… you name it! Everybody! Chrissie Hynde… I can´t remember everybody. It seems like everybody in the rock music world, even Madonna. It just goes on and on.
Meeting all these people, a guy like you, do you ever get starstruck?
Robb: No, no, no not at all! Everybody´s just people and I really like when they´re cool. Most people have been actually cool people. The odd person ends up being a fucking jerk and disappoints you, but what can you do, right?
Touring for this album, will it be mainly a headline tour or will you do any opening shows for other bands?
Robb: yeah, we´re gonna do everything! We just actually did four shows with Alice Cooper actually and we´ve got one more in the summertime. It´s both. We´re doing our own Anvil shows, we´re doing festival shows and we´ll tour with other artists and be part of a package. The whole mandate is to put Anvil in front of as many people as possible. We love blowing people away and that´s what we do! Every show we walk away with victory. It´s great! There´s a lot of new fans. There´s thousands and thousands of young new fans and a lot of people want to see if “Hey, are these guys for real? Are these guys really, really good?” and they walk away blown away.
Are there any plans for a special live show?
Robb: Well, as soon as we should become a mega headliner, when that day arrives, we have a plan on building the mechanical 80 foot anvil! It should be the heaviest thing, sickest thing ever seen in rock and roll!
Alright! Thank you so much Robb!
Robb: Thanks for the support, man!
I hope you come back later on after Metal Town and play a couple of more shows in Sweden!
Robb: Listen, I love Sweden man and all of Scandinavia rocks and I hope so too. I think we´re doing a boat cruise in October in Stockholm. To do a small kind of headline tour, we just needs to get a promoter who wants to do it.
Absolutely! Thanks again and have a great one!
Robb: You too brother!