Recorded in late 1980, “Hard ‘N’ Heavy” became the first album to be released by four young Canadian lads calling themselves Anvil. All the songs on this CD are very well put together. The band as a whole displays incredible talent throughout this CD. Reiner’s drum playing is right there with the best that Metal has to offer, and the guitar and vocals performed by Lips are awesome. The songs are straight, in-your-face heavy metal. The lyrics are largely sexually driven, but not to a point that they are obscene by 21st century standards. The band does cover the Rolling Stones hit “Paint It Black”, and while I admire the band for tackling such an iconic rock classic, I found it to be the weakest song on the CD. “Oh Jane” is the band’s first attempt at a heavy metal ballad (of sorts), and they pull it off quite well, never once going too soft, and sticking with the extra-heavy, extra-loud core ingredients that make up this album.
“Hard ‘N’ Heavy” laid the foundation for Anvil to accellerate onto the early 1980’s heavy metal mega-highway that encompassed bands like Metallica, Quiet Riot, and Iron Maiden. The band followed up this album with “Metal On Metal”, which became the band’s true classic album, containing many of the groups more sought after songs.
You won’t be disappointed with this CD. It’s a great disc to toss in, crank up, and rock out to. Though many of Anvil’s quintessential songs were spawned from their second album, “Hard ‘N’ Heavy” remains as the band’s bunker-busting debut album that is sure to please any heavy metal fan the world over.