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Audio, Cassette, Original recording reissued, November 27, 1990
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Now remastered with added gut-wrenching bass, this debut album from Motörhead was cut in 1977 over a few speed-driven days at Escape Studio, and it shows. From the opening bass roar of the eponymous title track it is non-stop, relentless, churning, brain damaging, heavy rock 'n' roll. This is no ponderous heavy metal band fronted by some poodle-headed castrato - no, this is the real deal, down dirty and greasy and with its boots firmly rooted in rock 'n' roll.
Ian 'Lemmy' Kilmister had the right background to finally create Motörhead in 1975. Brought up on rock 'n' roll in the 50s he had been a member of the Shel Talmy-produced beat group the Rockin' Vicars, had a stint as roadie for Jimi Hendrix and was then in Roundhouse favorites Sam Gopal's Dream in 1969, before joining the ultimate psychedelic weirdos Hawkwind.
However Lemmy was too much for them and was deported after a slight altercation with customs over substances at the Canadian border. Hawkwind's loss was the world of rock 'n' roll's gain as the group, first named Bastard, renamed Motörhead, was founded. The blue touch paper was effectively ignited on a new and lethal approach to 'heavy music', culminating in the spawning of speed metal by the 'bastard children' of Lemmy's brain child.
After a disastrous beginning and a couple of false starts and personnel changes, Motörhead accidentally made an album for Chiswick Records. It started out as a farewell single and ended up as the beginning of a career that continues to this day.
Not only is this issue remastered from the original analogue mixes, bringing out the full frequency, in-your-face grunge, but there is a sleeve note from Chiswick Records supremo Ted Carroll telling the full hair-raising story of the roller coaster ride that was the making of Motörhead by Motörhead. We have added City Kids, the B-side to the Motörhead single and the four cuts that appeared on the later out-takes EP Beer Drinkers and Hell Raisers released first in 1980.
As Lemmy once said... ''If Motörhead moved in next door to you, your lawn would probably die.'' You better believe it! --Roger Armstrong, Ace Records UK
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After replacing the old drummer with Phil Taylor, the band was bound to release their first album, but unfortunately, after recording the songs, the record label refused to realease the album because they didnt like it. The album was eventually released four years later, after the band had gained mainstream success.
A year later, Wallis decided that he needed a backing guitarist to play while he is playing the solos, but shorly after the guitarist Eddie Clarke was recruited, Wallis quit the band and rejoined The Pink Faries, thus creating the classic trio for the band: Lemmy-Clarke-Taylor.
By the end of '76 the reputation of the band was very negative, and they had actually won the "Worst Band In The World" poll. Motorhead was deep in ***. By April '77, the band members became so discouraged and so depressed that they decided to break up the band. In one last effort, they asked Lemmy's acquaintance Ted Carroll from Chiswhik Records to come and record their last show. Sadly, or maybe happily, Ted couldnt afford to record their show, so instead he offered them two days at his studio to record a single. The band gladly took the chance but well-rehearsed as they were, they managed to record eleven unfinished tracks in those two days. Impressed, Ted gave them more studio time and in a short time they finished thirteen tracks. Eight of those were released in their eponymous debut, in '77.
Its debut is for some reason Motorhead's most overlooked album. It feautres decent classic-Motorhead style songs from start to finish. Kicking off with the best introduction to the album and the band, the self-titled Motorhead, which is suprisingly on par with other known Motorhead songs such as Overkill and Ace Of Spades. The album then continues with some slightly different tracks such as Iron Horse and Lost Johnny, but overall it maintains the same attiude throughout all 33 minutes.
The album provides everyhing a Motorhead album should, speedy rough songs, Lemmy's melodic bass lines, fast distorted bluesy-influenced riffs and of course the dirtiest vocals you will ever hear in your entire life. It truly serves its purpose.
And I dont think I even need to mention how influential Motorhead was. Motorhead and their self-titled album (although the ones to come will be more influential) were a cornerstore in the NWOBHM history. They were so groundbraking that they have inspired both Thrash, Speed Metal and even Punk. This is probably the reason why so many bands have listed them as their influence. Even though they are not so well-known, they inspired whole genres. They are arguably the most influential band in Metal history.
One other thing there is to like(or possible dislike) about Motorhead is that they are extremley consistent. If you like this album you will probably like the next nine studio albums - all are aggresive and violent, rough and dirty.
Motorhead was released in September 24th, 1977. The record label is Chiswick and it its 32:53 minutes long.
Overall, I wouldn't recomend starting a new listener off with this album. But for veterans, you need this one. Its catchy, gritty, and something that is rare to find in metal... down to earth fun.