Motorhead’s Latest Live Recording Impresses On CD Despite Audio Issues

Courtesy:  UDR Music/Motorhead Music

Courtesy: UDR Music/Motorhead Music

2016 has not been kind to the entertainment industry.  Legendary actor Gene Wilder just passed away this week as did Mexican music star Juan Gabriel.  Noel Neill, who played Lois Lane in The Adventures of Superman opposite George Reeves, also passed away this year along with hockey star Gordie Howe and boxing legend Muhammad Ali and so many others.  That list also includes Motorhead front man and rock legend Lemmy Kilmister.  Not long after Kilmister died, UDR music released one of the final concerts that the band held as a way to pay tribute to Motorhead and to Kilmister’s legacy.  The recording, Clean Your Clock, released June 24th, is an interesting effort.  That is because while it is enjoyable in its own right, it is not exactly a perfect recording.  Even with that in consideration it is still a recording that any diehard Motorhead fan will appreciate.

UDR’s recently released live Motorhead recording Clean Your Clock is an enjoyable tribute to both Motorhead and while it is not perfect it is still a recording that any diehard Motorhead fan will appreciate.  That is due in part to the concert’s set list.  The concert’s sixteen song set list takes listeners all the way back to the band’s 1979 sophomore album Overkill and reaches all the way up to the band’s final album, 2015’s Bad Magic.  There are also bits and pieces of the band’s early albums peppered throughout the performance, too including the title track from the band’s 1979 album Bomber, ‘Rock It,’ from the band’s 1983 album Another Perfect Day, ‘Doctor Rock,’ from the band’s 1986 album Orgasmatron, and a number of other hits.  Considering the fact that the band released some twenty-two albums over its life, there was no way that one single performance could cover all of that ground.  Keeping that in mind, the sixteen songs that are included in the album are still a good snapshot of the band’s body of work if only that.  One can only hope that more live recordings are to come; recordings that have an even bigger amount of the band’s material if not at least another swath of the band’s catalogue.  While the set list presented in this recording is a clear positive for the recording’s presentation, that presentation also suffers from at least one con.  The con in question is the concert’s audio mix.

The set list that makes up the body of Clean Your Clock is a major high point to the recording’s presentation.  It isn’t the concert’s only positive either.  That will be discussed later.  While the concert’s presentation does have one more positive, it sadly does have at least one con.  The con in question is the recording’s audio mix.  Hopefully this only applies with the recording’s CD presentation since the recording is presented in multiple platforms.  The audio mix presented in the concert’s CD platform is “muddy” to say the absolute least.  Kilmister’s vocals sound almost completely overpowered by his own bass line and by band mates Mikkey Dee and Phil Campbell.  The only times during which he can be clearly understood is those moments between songs in which Kilmister takes time to interact with the audience.  Other than that, Kilmister’s vocals sound completely muffled throughout the majority of the set’s songs.  Again, this seems to be the case at least on the concert’s CD platform.  Hopefully that isn’t the case with the concert’s other platforms.  Speaking of those other platforms, they are the recording’s other major positive.  They collectively more than make up for the one con of the issues with the recording’s audio mix.

The set list that is featured in Clean Your Clock and the audio mix throughout the concert are both key elements to consider in examining the recordings overall presentation.  That is because they show at least in terms of the recording’s CD platform, it isn’t perfect. Though, it is still enjoyable.  While the concert’s audio mix is clearly an issue in terms of the recording’s CD platform, hopefully that is not the case in its other platforms.  Those other platforms are the recording’s other major bright spot.  Along with its availability on CD, the concert is also available on double vinyl gatefold presentation as well as CD/DVD combo pack, a digital download, Blu-ray/CD combo set, and two separate limited edition box sets.  This means that Motorhead fans have plenty of options from which to choose in terms of taking in the concert.  More often than not, most live recordings’ video presentations far outshine their audio only counterparts.  So it’s very possible that the DVD and Blu-ray combo packs present much more impressive audio mixes as well as their own impressive video mix.  Keeping that in mind, the fact that the concert is available in a number of platforms makes the concert’s overall presentation that much better.  That is because it offers audiences more options from which to choose, and in turn, better odds of a presentation with a better audio mix (as well as an impressive video mix).  When this is set against the positive of the concert’s set list and the one con of its troubled audio mix, the combination of all three elements still leaves Clean Your Clock one more welcome addition to any Motorhead fan’s collection.

UDR’s presentation of Motorhead’s new live recording Clean Your Clock is not a perfect recording.  That is clear in listening to the concert’s audio mix in its CD platform.  The concert’s set list and the variety of platforms in which it is available partner to make up for the CD’s one con.  Even with that one con, the CD presentation of Clean Your Clock is still a welcome addition to any Motorhead fan’s collection.  One can only hope that when Motorhead’s next live recording is released, its CD platform will have a better audio mix so that it can be said that it is a perfect recording.  In the meantime the CD presentation of Clean Your Clock still passes the test even if it isn’t perfect.  It is available now in stores and online.  More information on Clean Your Clock is available online now along with more Motorhead news at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.imotorhead.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/OfficialMotorhead

Twitter: http://twitter.com/myMotorhead

 

 

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Bad Magic Casts A Great New Spell For Fans

Courtesy:  UDR/Motorhead Music

Courtesy: UDR/Motorhead Music

The rock community and the music community in whole suffered a sad loss last week when former Motorhead drummer Phil Taylor passed away.  While Taylor hadn’t been a member of the band since 1992, he was one of the most well-known and beloved, having recorded and performed with the band for a total of fourteen years.  That is second only to current drummer Mikkey Dee.  That means that he had quite the impact both on the lives of his band mates and on the music community in whole.  He will be sorely missed.  While Taylor’s passing this week is reason to mourn, there is still reason to celebrate as the current Motorhead lineup released its latest full-length studio recording late this summer.  The album, Bad Magic, is the band’s twenty-second full-length album.  And it is yet another solid slab of rock from this veteran act.  The trademark hard rock/punk hybrid sound that has made Motorhead a fan favorite for so many years is just as prevalent throughout the course of this record as in any of the band’s previous studio recordings beginning with the album’s full-throttle opener ‘Victory Or Die.’  It is just one example of how much this album has to offer audiences.  For all of the fire and energy exhibited throughout the record, it does have at least a couple of more reserved moments to change things up a little bit.  ‘Til The End’ is one of those moments.  It starts off not necessarily soft, but soft in comparison to most of the album’s other songs.  And even when it does pick up, it is still not the high-energy composition that the album’s other songs are.  Most surprising of all is the album’s other “reserved” song, its cover of The Rolling Stones’ hit song Sympathy For The Devil.’  At first thought, one wouldn’t necessarily associate Lemmy and company with The Rolling Stones.  But the band’s take on the classic tune works in so many ways.  And being the album’s closer, it makes for a perfect counterpoint to the album’s high-energy opener and the rest of its adrenaline-fueled compositions even being a cover.  It is just one more example of just how much this album has to offer audiences.  It is hardly the last example of how much it has to offer audiences, too.  ‘Thunder & Lightning’ comes across with the energy of a bolt of lightning.  ‘Teach Them How To Bleed’ cuts through just as solidly.  Yes, that awful pun was fully intended.  And ‘When The Sky Comes Looking For You’ could just as easily be used for a single—just as much as any of the album’s other song.  Each of those songs set alongside the pieces not directly noted here make Bad Magic an album that will cast its own hard rock spell on Motorhead fans and metal heads alike.

Motorhead’s latest full-length studio album Bad Magic is yet another solid slab of rock that will cast its own hard rock spell on everyone that hears it.  That is evident right from the thirteen-track album’s fiery, adrenaline-fueled opener ‘Victory Or Die’ right through to its surprisingly enjoyable cover of The Rolling Stones’ ‘Sympathy For The Devil.’  All things considered, it is a record that every Motorhead fan should have in his or her music library.  Speaking of ‘Victory Or Die,’ it is just one example of how much this record has to offer both Motorhead’s fans and metal heads around the world.  In regards to the song’s musical content, it displays the familiar punk/hard rock hybrid sound that has fueled the band for forty years and maintained its place amongst the rock community’s elite acts.  The band wastes no time launching right into the song with Lemmy singing, “Victory or death!” before he, guitarist Phil Campbell and drummer Mikkey Dee unleash the song’s full aural assault.  Dee’s time keeping is rock solid from start to finish while Campbell and Kilmister instantly get the blood flowing just as much with their respective lines.  The pure energy of the song’s musical content expertly compliments the commentary contained in the song’s lyrical content.  Lemmy sings in this song, “What have you done/What’s in your mind/What do you need/Where shall we go to let it out/What have you seen/We don’t know where you’ve been/Life so often blows your candle out/Believe in what is right/what’s right for you tonight.”  It comes across as a commentary telling listeners to think for themselves.  That argument can be made as he sings later in the song, “Look around and see the soldiers/See them marching off to war/Take a careful look as they swing by/They’re all heroes but they don’t know what they’re fighting for/That’s the spirit/Victory or die.”  He comes across as saying that these men are heroes, but they’re not really thinking for themselves.  All they know is that they are going off to fight.  The seeming concept of thinking for one’s own self is illustrated in this song even more as Lemmy sings, “Look up and see the flying saucers cruising in the sky/I saw one myself it ain’t no lie/Looks down and see the road you’re on/As if you are on a marathon/That’s the spirit victory or die.”  He goes on explaining about how we each have our own experiences and learn different things.  So no matter what we experience and learn, that is our own personal belief.  Of course that is just the interpretation of this critic alone.  As always, it could be completely off the mark.  Hopefully that isn’t the case and this critic is at least somewhere in the proverbial ballpark.  But it seems to be what Kilmister is trying to get across to audiences.  He would seem to be saying to people don’t let anyone tell you what to think.  It is definitely a strong message.  The addition of the song’s driving musical content helps to drive home that message as it helps to enhance the illustrate the feeling that someone should have in realizing that he or she should think for himself or herself.  It is just one example of how much this record has to offer the band’s fans and audiences in general.  ‘Till The End’ is another example of the album’s depth of content.

‘Victory or Die’ is a solid opener for Motorhead in its latest full-length studio album.  The energy generated via the song’s musical content partners with its lyrical content that seemingly promotes individualistic thought to make a song that definitely makes quite the first impression for the band here.  It is of course just one example of just how much Bad Magic has to offer audiences over the course of its thirteen total tracks and forty-two minutes.  ‘Til The End’ is another example of how much this record has to offer listeners.  It shows that the band can have just as much of an impact playing more reserved material as the more upbeat stuff, too.  That is exemplified in the song ‘Till The End.’  In comparison to most of the album’s other material, this song starts off much slower and overall reserved in terms of its musical content.  Even when it does pick up, it is still reserved in comparison to most of the album’s other offerings. The song’s introspective lyrical content makes it stand out even more as Lemmy sings in his gravelly delivery, “In my years my life has changed/I can’t turn back the hands of time/I can’t tell you just what made me change/All I know is who I am/I’ll never let you down/The last one you can trust until the end.” There’s a certain vulnerability in his voice even as he belts out this verse that shows a wholly different side to Lemmy. The song’s musical content set against such contemplative lyrics and powerful vocal delivery makes this song one of the brightest of this record’s moments. If that doesn’t prove said argument then the song’s softer moments definitely will. He sings out about where he has been, and where and who he is. It is really a deep moment and welcome departure from the frantic energy exuded by the rest of the album’s featured compositions. Even as impressive as it is in the bigger picture of the album’s body it still is not the only remaining example of how much this album has to offer audiences. The band’s cover of The Rolling Stones’ ‘Sympathy For The Devil’ can also be cited as another of Bad Magic’s high points.

‘Victory or Die’ and ‘Til The End’ are both key examples of just how much Bad Magic has to offer audiences. That is because both songs show once again the band’s musical and lyrical abilities. The songs’ lyrical content will have any listener thinking. Their dramatically different musical styles show that the band can do more than just play loud and fast. They show that the band can also succeed in crafting something slower so to speak, yet still be heavy in its own right. As impressive as both songs are in the bigger picture of Bad Magic they are just a small part of the picture that makes this album yet another impressive addition to Motorhead’s catalogue. The band’s cover of The Rolling Stones’ ‘Sympathy For The Devil,’ which closes out the album, is one more example of just how much the album has to offer audiences as well as the band itself. While it stays largely true to the Stones’ original song, Motorhead has given it is own identity at the same time here. It really serves to exhibit the band’s blues rock roots and again the breadth of its abilities. Listeners will love Campbell’s soaring guitar solo in the song’s bridge and Dee’s rock solid time keeping. For those that don’t know, trying to keep time in the hi-hat, while executing a poly-rhythmic pattern on the toms is not easy. It requires its own share of concentration. Lemmy’s vocal delivery style gives the song even more of its own identity here in comparison to The Rolling Stones’ original take on the tune. That’s not a bad thing, either. In fact it makes Motorhead’s take that much more interesting to hear. All things considered the song is the perfect counterpoint to the album’s higher-energy opener and the rest of its featured songs. It was the perfect choice with which to close out the album since it could be argued that it sort of sets listeners somewhat gently back down after going through the musical adventure that was the rest of Bad Magic. Together with ‘Victory or Die’ and ‘Til The End’ it shows once more just how much Bad Magic has to offer audiences and how much Motorhead still has to offer audiences. And while all three compositions show in their own unique way just how much Motorhead has to offer audiences (as well as the band’s new album) they are hardly the only pieces in this collection that could be cited as examples of that offering. Any of the songs included in this album could be cited as examples of how much the album has to offer audiences. All things considered Bad Magic proves from beginning to end to be an album that will cast its own spell on Motorhead fans and metal heads alike and will have them agreeing that this album is one more of the best of the year’s new hard rock and metal albums.

Motorhead’s twenty-second full-length studio recording is one of the best of this year’s new hard rock and metal albums. It proves this nonstop throughout the course of its thirteen tracks and forty-two minutes. Whether through the familiar punk/hard rock hybrid sound of the album’s opener, the more reserved tones of the introspective ‘Til The End’ or even for the surprising take on The Rolling Stones’ classic ‘Sympathy For The Devil,’ the band shows from beginning to end just how much it and its new album have to offer audiences. Those songs set against the rest of the numbers featured throughout the album’s body makes the album that much more impressive. The end result is an album that shows why Motorhead remains today one of rock’s elite and why the album in itself is one of the best of the year’s new hard rock and metal offerings. Bad Magic is available now in stores and online. It can be ordered in a variety of bundle packs online via the band’s online store now at https://shop.imotorhead.com/collections/bad-magic. Fans can also pick up Bad Magic now at any of the band’s upcoming live shows as it makes its way across Europe and the UK. More information on the band’s tour and album is available online now along with all of the band’s latest news at:

 

Website: http://www.imotorhead.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/OfficialMotorhead

Twitter: http://twitter.com/mymotorhead

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Motorhead Hasn’t Lost Any Steam Even After Twenty-One Albums

Courtesy: UDR

Courtesy: UDR

2013 has been quite the year for the metal community.  New releases from the likes of Chimaira, Kingshifter, and so many others have made the field among the metal community extremely crowded.  Enter veteran rock band Motorhead and its members’ twenty-first full length studio album, Aftershock.  With the release of Aftershock, Lemmy Kilmister and his band mates have made the choice of the year’s best new hard rock and metal even more difficult.  Kilmister left fans wondering when they’re hear the next new Motorhead album when it was announced earlier in the year that he was suffering from an illness.  So it only makes sense that he, drummer Phil Campbell, and guitarist Mikkey Dee would open the band’s twenty-first full length studio release with the pummeling ‘Heartbreaker.’  This song is a bold statement, letting the world know that not even illness will keep Motorhead from making music.  ‘Coup de Grace’, the album’s second song, keeps the energy flowing, proving more still why this trio of musicians is still collectively one of the rock world’s greatest bands nearly four decades after it was originally formed.  The band barely lets up even the slightest over the course of the album’s fourteen total tracks.  Simply put, the band leaves listeners breathless by the end of the album’s closer, ‘Paralyzed.’  By the time this song’s final notes fade, any purist metal head will agree that what he or she has just experienced in this album is a work that is far more than deserving of a spot on any rock critic’s list of the year’s best new hard rock albums.

Lemmy, Phil, and Mikkey waste no time getting things moving on Aftershock.  The album’s opener, ‘Heartbreaker’ is proof of that.  It’s a full on, no nonsense hard rocker much in the vein of the band’s much more classic records through the years.  Keeping in mind that Kilmister had suffered from an illness before this record was released, it makes this song all the more impressive return especially for him.  His voice sounds as pounding as ever as he sings, “Careful where you stand now boy/Everything has changed/Got to search and destroy/Everything has changed/Got to move/Stop the dreams/All protection gone/Listen to how the people scream/On and on and on.”  Lemmy has never sounded better.  His powerhouse vocals alongside the musicianship of Phil and Mikkey collectively make this an excellent first impression for anyone that is new to the music of Motorhead.  It’s just as impressive a return for the band’s more seasoned fans.

‘Heartbreaker’ is one heck of a way for the members of Motorhead to open the band’s new album.  The energy doesn’t let up after this song ends, either.  Lemmy, Phil, and Mikkey keep the throttle on high as they launch into the equally pounding ‘Coup De Grace.’  The song’s musical energy alone will have any purist metal head’s horns high in the air.  The defiant lyrical side serves to make it even more of a fan favorite.  Lemmy sings in this song, “Don’t believe a word/Don’t run with the herd/I don’t like the news/Watch it every week/Just because/I don’t believe it/Don’t make me a freak/If you knew the real stories/Can’t be fooled no more/You can kiss/Or you can tell/Parasite or whore.”  He goes on to sing in the song’s next verse, “Don’t believe the lies/Truth will make you wise.”  The statement being made here is largely clear.  That statement set alongside the song’s musical side exudes pure hard rock energy.  And the combination of the two elements will certainly make this another fan favorite.

The energy exuded by ‘Coup De Grace’ and ‘Heartbreaker’ is incredible to say the least.  And it hardly lets up at any one point throughout the course of Aftershock. This is the case even with the album’s closer, ‘Paralyzed.’  The song’s lyrical side is interesting to say the least.  The song’s lyrics are obviously metaphorical.  Kilmister writes, “Looking for a temple/Looking for the gold/Looking like a hero/When the story’s told.” He goes on singing, “Flying over mountains/Flying over seas/Flying through a hurricane/Praying on your knees/Searching for a fortune/Searching for a clue/Flying in the face of death/Flying into view.”  It’s certain to lead to plenty of discussion as to what exactly is being said here.  Add the discussions in question to the song’s full throttle musical side, and audiences get a song that closes the album just as solidly as ‘Heartbreaker’ opened the record.  These songs, and those not mentioned all work together to make Aftershock one that Motorhead’s legions of fans will love whether it’s a first introduction or the twenty-first re-introduction.  It’s available now in stores and online.  As of right now, Lemmy is still fighting the good fight, trying to get back to full strength.  As long as everything goes as planned, the band will hit the road in Europe in 2014, beginning with a performance in Glasgow, Scotland on February 13th, 2014.  A full listing of the band’s most current tour schedule is available online at http://www.imotorhead.com/tour.  More information on the band’s tour, all the latest news from the band, and on Aftershock is available online at http://www.imotorhead.com and http://www.facebook.com/OfficialMotorhead.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.