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LAST HURRAH: Jaycee Carroll high-fives fans as he leaves the Spectrum court after what was likely his last home game. Click Arts&Life for a link to photos. / Photo by Tyler Larson

Today's word on journalism

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Grammatically Speaking:

"We owe much to our mother tongue. It is through speech and writing that we understand each other and can attend to our needs and differences. If we don't respect and honor the rules of English, we lose our ability to communicate clearly and well. In short, we invite mayhem, misery, madness, and inevitably even more bad things that start with letters other than M."

--Martha Brockenbrough, grammarian and founder, National Grammar Day

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'Anvil -- The True Story of Anvil' is a Sundance favorite.

By Ben Hansen

January 28, 2008 | Are you a Metallica fan? Have you ever listened to Megadeth, Slayer, Anthrax, or any other band from that genre and wondered where those bands found their initial sound? If you know your metal roots, one band comes to mind -- Anvil. This band inspired many metal artists who went on to sell millions of albums and tour to millions of fans…while Anvil quickly faded into obscurity.

Anvil, hailed by some as the godfathers of thrash and speed metal, have persevered for 30 years as a band, refusing to fold regardless of industry change, family pressures, or any other external force. Founding and current members Steven "Lips" Kudlow (guitars, vocals) and Robb Reiner (drums) have been playing together since they were school friends in Toronto, and made a pact to rock together forever. One of the surprise hits of Sundance, Anvil --The True Story of Anvil, chronicles the most recent tour and album recording of the band Anvil, some 25 years after their greatest relevance in the eyes of the music industry.

Director Sacha Gervasi spent more than two years with the band, chronicling and amassing footage that has been masterfully cut and placed in making an epic story that takes the audience through every range of emotion. Facing failure after failure, and given every reason to give up on their friendship and their music, the band comes across constant challenges in their attempt to get out playing live in front of the fans. It's hard not to feel the bitter disappointment with the band as they play to "packed houses" of a few people, have record executives reject their latest and greatest album, or hear family members repeat the message that they need to "give it up." Lips and Robb make a loveable "Yin and Yang" tandem, and while also layered with a good dosage of humor, this show definitely has the potential to be a hit, and should be released to the general public sometime in the near future, as per Sacha. In Sacha's words, "At first you may see these guys and think that they are just funny old heavy metal guys, but they are authentic guys. Unlike most people, they are not afraid to go out and try to live their dreams."

This movie is definitely a classic story of friendship, perseverance, and a "Never Say Die," attitude that at times would benefit each of us, capturing the true human spirit at some of its most raw moments. Metal guitarist Slash (of Guns N' Roses and Velvet Revolver fame) summed things up perfectly with a quote at the end of the movie, stating, "How many bands can you think of honestly who can stay together for 30 years? You've got a couple -- you've got the Rolling Stones, you've got the Who, and you've got Anvil." Let's hope these guys can rock for another 30 years.

Check out Anvil on their website at for additional information on the film and more.



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