This past Friday, veteran hard rock band Anvil released its latest album, Impact Is Imminent, to the masses. Released through AFM Records, the record is now the band’s 19th (yes, 19th) album, and came more than two years after the release of the band’s then latest album, Legal At Last, which was released Feb. 14, 2020. The album is a presentation that us certain to offer the most appeal to the band’s established audiences. Its combined musical and lyrical content, all of which will be examined here, will also offer at least some appeal to more casual audiences. The record’s production rounds out its most important elements. This item will also be addressed later. Each item noted here is key in its own way to the whole of the album’s presentation. All things considered, they make the album a presentation that most hard rock and Anvil fans will find worth hearing at least once.
Impact Is Imminent, the latest album from veteran hard rock band Anvil, is an engaging and entertaining new offering from the band. Most of the band’s established audiences and more casual fans alike will find something to like about the record, beginning with its overall musical content. The musical content is important to note because of the sounds and stylistic approaches exhibited in each song through said item. From one song to the next, the musical content largely throws back to the hard rock sounds of the late 80s. Throughout the course of the record, audiences can make comparisons to music from Motorhead more than once thanks to the specific guitar styles and vocal delivery styles. On a separate note, a song, such as ‘Lockdown,’ with its trudging sludge style approach takes audiences in yet another direction a la vintage Black Sabbath. The incorporation of the horns into ‘Gomez,’ the album’s opener, makes for yet another unique point of interest in terms of the album’s musical arrangements. That is because of the contrast of the horns to the heavier guitars, bass, and drums. Strangely enough, it sounds like a near carbon copy of ‘Teabag,’ the album’s other instrumental track. It is difficult to decide which whether this is good or bad. A very brief mention of the songs are made in a press release about the album, but there is not explanation as to whether the band intentionally made them sound so much like one another, as if the latter is a continuation of the prior. Regardless, the bluesy, upbeat approach of the songs’ arrangements, set alongside all of the variety in the other arrangements makes for plenty for audiences to appreciate if only in regards to the album’s musical arrangements.
The musical content featured in Impact Is Imminent is only a part of what makes it interesting. The lyrical themes featured throughout the album make for their own interest. That is because of the range of topics on which the songs touch, lyrically speaking. They range from the silly to the more serious throughout the record. The album’s lead single, ‘Ghost Shadow,’ for instance, seems to come across literally as a story about a paranormal experience while the album’s opener, ‘Take A Lesson’ is a welcome reminder to audiences to not care what others think of them. It is a classic, timeless rock theme. Front man Steve Kudlow leaves nothing to doubt here as he comes right out and sings in the song’s lead verse and chorus, “Try to keep yourself from being led astray/Ignore the stupid things that people say/Back stabbing liars/How they deceive/They’re not the cure/They are the disease/When you know you’re right/Follow your heart/Never let anyone rip it apart/Take what you got till you have not/On the spot/It’s your they forgot.” From there, Kudlow adds later in the song, a story about how he grew as a person over time, learning to use his experiences to grow, endure and improve. It is a theme that is certain to resonate with audiences.
‘Someone To Hate’ is another example of the importance of the album’s lyrical content. Kudlow gets socially conscious in this song as he sings about how divided the world has become. That is made clear as he sings, “Divisive influence dominates one’s soul/To look for the difference/The focus and the goal/Finding the faults and looking to see bad/To incite confrontation/Arguments to be had/Social distortion/On congruence to blame/Murdering your neighbor/The pity and the shame/Revenge or vengeance/Doesn’t matter the choice/Polarized vision/You only have one voice/Someone to hate/Don’t matter who.” This is clearly a commentary on what has happened to the world today, what with the hyper-partisan nature of America and the equally harsh divisions that are separating the world today. It is another example of how the record’s lyrical themes are sure to keep listeners just as engaged and entertained as the album’s musical content. The two items do plenty to make the album worth hearing and are still not all that make it appealing to the noted audiences. The record’s production puts the finishing touch to its presentation.
The production that went into Impact Is Imminent is important to note because of its role in the record’s general effect. The production that went into the album ensured that each musician’s performance was expertly balanced with that of his counterpart. The guitars cut through so clearly while the bass and drums collectively add their own richness and heaviness to the mix. When Kudlow’s vocals are added to the mix, they are balanced just as well with the work of his band mates. The end result of the expert production is that each song has the most powerful impact possible. It leaves the album’s general effect just as engaging and entertaining as the record’s content. When that content is coupled with the production, the whole makes the album overall a mostly successful presentation.
Impact Is Imminent, the brand new album from the veteran hard rock band Anvil, is a record that is sure to find plenty of appeal among the band’s established audiences and even more casual fans. That is proven in part through its musical arrangements. The arrangements largely throw back to the era of big riffs and even bigger hair, but still have their own identity separate from one another, for the most part. There is the one issue with the record’s two instrumentals, but overall, the songs do each have their own identity and appeal. The lyrical themes featured throughout the album are just as diverse as the record’s musical arrangements. They touch on serious and not-so-serious topics from one to the next, keeping things interesting along the way in their own way. The production that went into the album keeps things interesting, too. That is because it ensures the record’s general effect is that appealing. Each item examined is important in its own way to the whole of the album’s presentation. All things considered, they make Impact Is Imminent still one of the best rock albums of the year so far.
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