Mark Taylor of Record Collector magazine recently conducted an interview with vocalist/guitarist Steve “Lips” Kudlow of Canadian metal legends ANVIL. You can now watch the chat below.
Speaking about ANVIL’s August 2013 concert in Singapore as the opening act for METALLICA, Lips said: “[It] was amazing. Very interestingly, when we got there, we were in the changing room, and I was gonna get myself sorted, and all of a sudden [legendary rock photographer] Ross Halfin walks in, and he starts in [adopts British accent]: ‘Where is your homosexual guitar player?’ He goes up to Robb [Reiner, ANVIL drummer] and he starts giving me fucking stick right away. So he proceeds to tell us: ‘I knew you were here. That’s why I [came looking] for you, but I just told the [METALLICA] guys that you’re here and they thought you were playing a pub nearby and they were going, ‘Let’s go watch them.” He goes, ‘No, you don’t have to leave the venue. They’re opening for you tonight.’ And then they’re freaking out. So, you know, we got together. I mean, I hadn’t talked to James [Hetfield, METALLICA frontman] since 1983; so that’s a long time ago.”
He continued: “We [METALLICA and ANVIL first] met back in ’83 with the Old Bridge Militia. If you know what that is, it was an area in New Jersey. Jonny Z [Megaforce Records] had brought METALLICA, and they were all staying at our friend Joe’s place. And we just happened to be down at the same time, and that’s when we first met. And we came down with a copy of the ‘Forged In Fire’ album and they just had ‘Kill ‘Em All’. And we swapped and we listened to each other’s records and had a good time that day, all that, and I hadn’t seen [James] again since. It was pretty out there. And it felt like [when we saw them in Singapore] we just continued the conversation from 35 years ago. Here we are now.”
Lips went on to praise the METALLICA guys for remaining “really down to earth” despite their mega-rock-star status. He said: “To them, we’re from the same world, so you never got the feeling, like, ‘Hey, man, we’re big rock stars and you’re just the little guys.’ It was nothing like that. It was with huge respect — mutual respect, which is… That’s a good thing. Nothing wrong with that.”
The ANVIL frontman also recounted a funny incident that happened in the days following the Singapore concert. He said: “What was really interesting, a week later, we get home back from Singapore, and the METALLICA movie [‘Through The Never’], the 3D one, had just come out and it was being debuted in Toronto. So James is walking along the street in Toronto, and Robb’s son is up on a scaffold doing some painting. And he looks down and he goes, ‘Hey, James, wait right there. I’m coming down.’ He lowers the scaffold. James is just watching this guy. He goes, ‘I’m gonna stay here. I’ve gotta see what the fuck… This guy really acts like he really desperately wants to talk, so I’m gonna see what he has to say.’ And Tyler goes running up to James. He goes, ‘I’m Robb Reiner’s son.’ And James goes, ‘Oh my fucking God! I can’t believe it, man. I was just with your dad last week. This is fucking unbelievable.'”
ANVIL entered a studio in Cologne, Germany in October with producer Martin “Mattes” Pfeiffer to begin recording “Anvil Is Anvil” for an early 2016 release.
ANVIL last year parted ways with bassist Sal Italiano and replaced him with Chris Robertson.