The Anvil (album)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Anvil
Studio album by
Released26 March 1982[1]
Recorded1981 at Mayfair Studios in Primrose Hill, London
GenreSynthpop, new wave
ProducerVisage & Midge Ure
Visage studio album chronology
Visage EP
The Anvil
Fade to Grey – The Singles Collection
Singles from The Anvil
  1. "The Damned Don't Cry"
    Released: March 1982
  2. "Night Train"
    Released: June 1982
  3. "Whispers"
    Released: 1982 (Japan only)

The Anvil is the second studio album by the British rock/pop band Visage, released in March 1982 by Polydor Records. The album reached No. 6 in the UK and was certified "Silver" by the British Phonographic Industry in April 1982.


The Anvil was recorded in the latter part of 1981 at Mayfair Studios, London by the same line-up of the first album, except for John McGeoch who had left both Visage and Magazine to join Siouxsie and the Banshees. Original Visage bassist Barry Adamson rejoined as a session musician and contributed to several tracks.[2]


The Anvil was released in March 1982. It reached No. 6 on the UK Albums Chart,[3] which was the band's highest ever chart peak in the UK, and was certified "Silver" by the British Phonographic Industry in April 1982.[4] The album sparked a brief controversy at the time of its release for being named after New York's famous gay bar/nightclub of the era.

The album's first single was "The Damned Don't Cry" which was released three weeks ahead of the album and reached No. 11 in the UK Singles Chart.[3] The second single released was "Night Train" in June 1982, reaching No. 12.[3] The album's title track was remixed and released as a promo single as well as a German-language 12" version ("Der Amboss"), and "Whispers" was also released as a single in Japan (where both it and "Night Train" were used in TDK television commercials).

The album's front cover photograph was taken by Helmut Newton. The original vinyl release of the album came in an embossed/textured sleeve (considered as deluxe packaging for the time), and a limited number of copies (3,000) came with a free poster of Steve Strange posing with a number of models at the Hôtel George-V in Paris (the poster is an extended shot of the 12" single cover of "The Damned Don't Cry").

The Anvil was the last Visage record to feature Ultravox frontman Midge Ure, who left the band after its release. Commenting on his departure the following year, Ure stated:

"The trouble with Visage was that there were too many chiefs, six characters all wanting an equal say without putting in an equal amount of work. I was doing most of the writing and producing, and we all knew Steve [Strange] was the frontman, but when it became successful, jealousy and the nasty side of the business crept in. That was never the way it was intended.

— Midge Ure, 1983[5]

In later years, when reflecting upon the album, Ure also stated he felt the track "Again We Love" would have been a good single.[6]

The album's first release on the compact disc format was in Germany in 1983. It was re-issued on CD in the United States in 1997 by One Way Records, complete with two bonus tracks (though they are tracks from the 1980–81 era and not that of The Anvil). The Anvil was re-issued in the UK on CD by Cherry Red Records on 17 March 2008, containing six bonus tracks and detailed liner notes. A Remastered Edition, mastered from the original tapes, was released on CD in the US in 2020 by Rubellan Remasters including all the B sides and Dance mixes from the singles.[7]


Professional ratings
Review scores
Record Collector[9]
Smash Hits5/10[10]

In his retrospective review, Dan LeRoy of AllMusic wrote that "almost all the band's efforts on The Anvil are extremely well-crafted synth pop."[8] Emily Mackay of Record Collector opined that the album "[still] sounds remarkably fresh."[9]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks are written by Visage (Billy Currie, Rusty Egan, Dave Formula, Steve Strange and Midge Ure)

Side A
1."The Damned Don't Cry"4:43
2."Anvil (Night Club School)" (known as "The Anvil" elsewhere, including various compilation albums and singles)4:39
3."Move Up"4:25
4."Night Train"4:29
Side B
1."The Horseman"4:41
2."Look What They've Done"4:49
3."Again We Love"4:44
4."Wild Life"4:24
1997 reissue bonus tracks
10."We Move (Dance Mix)"6:28
11."Frequency 7 (Dance Mix)"5:02
2008 reissue bonus tracks
10."We Move (Dance Mix)"6:28
11."Frequency 7 (Dance Mix)"5:02
12."The Damned Don't Cry (Dance Mix)"5:45
14."I'm Still Searching"3:41
15."Mind of a Toy (Dance Mix)"5.14
2020 remaster bonus tracks
11."I'm Still Searching"3:38
12."We Move (USA Unreleased Single Remix)"3.43
13."The Damned Don't Cry (Dance Mix)"5:43
14."Night Train (Dance Mix)"6.07
15."The Anvil (Dance Mix)"6.13
16."Pleasure Boys (Dance Mix)"6.55 [11]



Additional personnel[edit]



Certifications for The Anvil
Region Certification Certified units/sales
United Kingdom (BPI)[18] Silver 60,000^

^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.


  1. ^ "News" (PDF). Record Business. 8 March 1982. p. 4. Retrieved 20 August 2022.
  2. ^ Visage – The Anvil (Expanded Edition) 2020 album sleeve notes by Steve Pafford
  3. ^ a b c "Visage | Artist | Official Charts". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
  4. ^ BPI (enter "Visage" in search terms)
  5. ^ Steels, Mark (23 June 1983). "Midge, Bill, Warren & Chris (An Interview with Ultravox)". Smash Hits. EMAP Metro. 5 (13): 45.
  6. ^ "crowdcast midge ure". 16 November 2020.
  7. ^ "Visage / The Anvil".
  8. ^ a b LeRoy, Dan. "The Anvil – Visage | Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
  9. ^ a b Mackay, Emily (June 2008). "The Anvil review". Record Collector (350). Retrieved 27 December 2014.
  10. ^ Birch, Ian (18–31 March 1982). "Albums". Smash Hits: 27.
  11. ^ "Visage - the Anvil". Discogs. 17 January 2020.
  12. ^ Pennanen, Timo (2006). Sisältää hitin – levyt ja esittäjät Suomen musiikkilistoilla vuodesta 1972 (in Finnish) (1st ed.). Helsinki: Kustannusosakeyhtiö Otava. ISBN 978-951-1-21053-5.
  13. ^ " – Visage – The Anvil" (in German). GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved 19 November 2021.
  14. ^ " – Visage – The Anvil". Hung Medien. Retrieved 19 November 2021.
  15. ^ " – Visage – The Anvil". Hung Medien. Retrieved 19 November 2021.
  16. ^ "Official Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 19 November 2021.
  17. ^ Rees, Dafydd; Lazell, Barry; Jones, Alan (1983). "The Top 100 UK Albums". Chart File Volume 2. London: Virgin Books. pp. 82–83. ISBN 0-907080-73-1.
  18. ^ "British album certifications – Visage – The Anvil". British Phonographic Industry. 28 April 1982. Retrieved 19 November 2021.

External links[edit]