ANVIL Frontman On New Lineup: It's A Much More Relaxed, Comfortable Feeling On Stage

John Doan of MusicFrenzy.net conducted an interview with guitarist/vocalist Steve "Lips" Kudlow and drummer Robb Reiner of Canadian metal legends ANVIL when the band played at the Sellersville Theater in Sellersville, Pennsylvania on January 31. When asked about the recent departure of ANVIL's longtime bassist Glenn Gyorffy (a.k.a. Glenn Five or G5) and the addition of Sal Italiano, Lips said, "It's so much more a relaxed, comfortable feeling on the stage. Sal steps back for me to do the front thing rather than trying to compete with it, or be a distraction to it. It's comfortable — it makes it very comfortable when everybody realizes what ti all is and there's no bad vibes, which is… I mean, vibes between the members is everything and the ill feelings that we had around us are gone. Regardless of whatever else is going on — playing-wise, music-wise — it's the same: it's the same singer, it's the same singer…" Reiner added: "It's just a really good, new energy around us guys, and you feel it on stage. It's just getting better every show. It's our fourth shows with Sal, and I see it going good places. Whether he'll be a permanent fit, we'll see. We talked about it as, like, 'We'll do the [current] tour, and we'll see how it goes.'"

Lips and Robb talking to MusicFrenzy.net about ANVIL's new lineup (audio):

Lips talking to MusicFrenzy.net about his views on metal music, metal fans, and the meaning of metal music (audio):

Lips talking to MusicFrenzy.net about wanting to change the world (audio):

Video footage of ANVIL's January 31 performance at Sellersville Theater in Sellersville, Pennsylvania can be seen below.

Photos of ANVIL's February 1 concert at Strange Matter in Richmond, Virginia can be found at HardRock.RVA.

Italiano — who is a member of the Long Island, New York IRON MAIDEN tribute band LIVE AFTER DEATH and original progressive metal act THE NIGHTMARE STAGE, as well as a former member of the acclaimed '80s heavy metal group CITIES — was interviewed on last weekend's edition of the "Maximum Threshold" show. When asked about landing the ANVIL gig, Italiano said, "We've been friends for a really long time. Back in the day, we used to play this club L'Amour in Brooklyn, and I was in a band called CITIES with A.J. Pero from TWISTED SISTER. Whenever ANVIL would come down, we would wind up opening. . . So this was an easy transition. I didn't get a lot of time to [prepare]. I mean, they called me up New Year's Eve and they said, 'Tour starts. Can you be up here on the 19th?' And I was on my way to California on the 19th, so I actually went there the weekend before. So I narrowed that window even more to learn the material. I knew a lot of it [already]; it was just a matter of rehearsing it. . . I didn't wanna hit the stage and there be a difference. I wanted it to still be an ANVIL show. It was really important to me that I did them their show. Because these guys have been doing it, and I didn't wanna come up here and be half prepared and make the band look bad. So I kind of guaranteed that I would get my act together when we played."

Regarding whether this is just a temporary collaboration or whether he will turn out to be a perment member of ANVIL, Sal said, "Whatever [ANVIL's Steve 'Lips' Kudlow and Robb Reiner] decide. I'm just taking it a day at a time. Right now I'm here to do the American shows, and they mentioned a couple of festivals that are over the summer, so I'll probably get to do those. But after that, whatever they decide to do. They may want somebody local. I'm from out of New York, and if they wanna gel with a bass player and start writing the next record, they may want somebody that's local. If we can work something out… We'll see."

Sal Italiano interviewed on "Maximum Threshold" (audio):

Italiano made his live debut with ANVIL on Friday, January 27 at the Live Wire concert club in Mentor-On-The-Lake, Ohio.

The band's setlist was as follows:

01. March Of The Crabs
02. 666
03. School Love
04. Juggernaut Of Justice
05. Winged Assassins
06. On Fire
07. This Is Thirteen
08. Mothra
09. Thumb Hang (dedicated to RIOT's Mark Reale)
10. Swing Thing (Robb Reiner drum solo)
11. Fuckin' Eh
12. New Orleans Voodoo
13. Metal On Metal

Encore:

14. Forged In Fire
15. Running

Glenn Five joined ANVIL in 1996 and has appeared on seven of the band's albums, including "This Is Thirteen" and the group's latest release, "Juggernaut Of Justice", on which he wrote and sang the song "This Ride".

ANVIL's latest album, "Juggernaut Of Justice", was released in Europe on June 20, 2011 (three days earlier in Germany) via SPV/Steamhammer. The effort was made available as a limited-edition digipak (including two bonus tracks), double gatefold LP in blue vinyl, standard version and a digital download.

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