One of Britain’s finest, most enduring and endearing heavy metal bands Motӧrhead sadly closed a chapter in 2015 when founder, bassist and vocalist Lemmy died, and they left an enormous legacy. Both in the studio and on stage. And while the Clean Your Clocks album was a great live set, recorded in the 6 months before Lemmy died, he was clearly unwell and a shadow of his former self. Here, recorded on 5 December 2012 in Berlin, on the Kings Of The Road tour, the band are really on form and the main man in full health.
Opening up the digipak, it’s a lovely package with poster insert, CD and DVD, while the 2LP has a gatefold, inners and a heavy solid feel. Lovely. We’re off to a good start.
Motӧrhead have released a number of live albums over the years, and despite the short running time (75 minutes), this one is as good as any. One of the reasons is the setlist, which is far more interesting than recent gigs had become known for. Some tracks here were long overdue a live airing and this set is all the better for it.
Kicking off with I Know How To Die (from 2010’s The World Is Ours) we’re off to a solid start, the enthusiastic crowd thoroughly enjoying things from the outset. Damage Case up next and some great guitar work. Then Stay Clean and Metropolis, with Lemmy introducing each one. Over The Top is a blast too, and each track, especially if you watch the DVD, show just how much of a racket drummer Mickey Dee provides, he never lets up, phenomenal work rate.
Doctor Rock is a more then welcome surprise, a hint of boogie thrash that gets the crowd going. String Theory is a fine guitar solo, then it’s into the classic The Chase Is Better Than The Catch. No Shine here, but Another Perfect Day is represented by Rock It which goes down a storm.
For me, the stand out is You’d Better Run, a chunky blues number that I’ve always loved. Crowd reaction ranges from “What’s this?” to “F**kin’ ‘Ell Yes Amazing”, and I’m def in the latter camp.
The One To Sing The Blues is another fantastic track, one of The ‘Head’s best, here extended to over 8 minutes with a drum solo. Then another roaring catchy blast introduced as rock’n’roll, Going To Brazil.
Into the final three with Killed By Death, a track with a great guitar line, extra guitar added here, and a track head and shoulders above the rest. Then the unforgettable Ace Of Spades. And excellent though guitarist Phil Campbell and drummer Mickey Dee are, there is something to be said of the finesse of Fast Eddie and Philthy Animal Taylor. And the encore a cracking version of Overkill.
Overall a wonderful piece of history, the performance and package both spot on. Video and sound are equally good. And for every supposed classic not included, a more interesting track is. No Shine, I’d settle with Rock It. You’d Better Run is brave and welcome. Do we really need another Bomber with that strength of catalogue? No.
My only issue is with a set of 75 minutes, there has to be a case to include the full unedited show (if it was edited) or two concerts?
A welcome and essential listen. Motӧrhead’s legacy lives on.
Joe Geesin | Now Spinning Magazine