There is no denying the power or impact that Motorhead has had on heavy rock music over their 30 years of existence. While the lineup has changed in respect to guitars and drums the material has consistently remained as hard as it can be. The cause for this consistency is clearly the work of that Ambassador of music Mister Lemmy Kilmister. So this evening when the Mighty Motorhead invaded B.B. King Blues Club it was sure to be a rocking night. The group was apparently closing out the US tour with this show and it would feature a number of classics as well as some newer numbers from their latest killer release Inferno. The stage was filled way past capacity with speakers where normally you don't see anything. To say that this would be a loud one would be an understatement. The club was packed to capacity once again and stood true to the fact that Motorhead's appeal has not faded at all over the years. The group had only played this same venue a couple of months earlier and as a matter of fact some people I stopped to speak to had attended that other show as well.
Read on for Ken Pierce's full concert review!
The Openers for this concert would be Slunt and Gizmachi and I am sad to say that I missed Gizmachi once again. This bothered me as I have been enjoying their debut CD The Imbuing very much lately. Next up was Slunt (who derive their name from slut and another word). Their brand of rock was pretty good, but not for a Motorhead show. I would have preferred someone a little heavier leading me into Lemmy. I was also surprised that Gizmachi was not in that spot since they're signed to a Sanctuary subsidiary. Monster Magnet was listed on the tickets, and marquee online for the show, yet for some reason was not scheduled to play. I found this out from their own record company and am really not sure where the confusion came from. Magnet would have been a perfect kick off to Motorhead so perhaps a future show will come about from this. Slunts Lead Singer Abby Gennet certainly does deliver the goods with her band mates. This equal mix of guy and gal rockers perform material that can be considered very scandalous and Abby is not too shy with the off-color comments onstage. The large amount of males up front did not seem to mind. Oh did I mention she was sexy as hell so this might have added to their accommodation. They did a kick ass and unexpected version of the Romeo Void song "Might Like You Better If We Slept Together". I would see them again on their own show to see if I enjoyed it more. Given this was Motorhead; I was gearing up for heavy all night long. I would soon have my wish in spades, the "Ace Of Spades" actually. Sorry, it is hard to resist the opening sometimes.
Phil Campbell, Mickey Dee, and Lemmy
It was earlier than the scheduled time when Motorhead came and as a result the room was still filling up. You could see the fans jumping over one another as they moved to get their favorite space in this venue. I was able to snare a comfortable section to the side and head bang with little incident with the singer of a local band in Brooklyn. From this vantage point I was also able to wave to the club bouncers hoping they would protect my photographer for the show. Hey I am not getting involved with that mess at a Motorhead show so I decided to let someone else worry about life and limb for a change. Actually, I worry more about anyone who gets in her way when she is on the mission of shooting quality pictures for the Metal Community.
For anyone that has never seen them perform you need to know that Motorhead delivers like no one else can. Their brand of Hard Rock is almost primal and pure and has remained unchanged in its basic premise for dozens of years. It has grown and perhaps become more mature and experienced but never loses the original vision that Lemmy and Company have set forth. Lemmy downplays this by joking, "if you don't know who were are, we are Motorhead and we play Rock and Roll". The band has been Phil Campbell and Mickey Dee for many years now and if you ask me this is the most killer of his lineups. The purist might contest me citing that "Fast" Eddie Clark and "Filthy" Animal Taylor were the best, but those members are long gone from touring with the band and you have to learn to enjoy who has filled their shoes. They certainly do an excellent job and when it came to classic renditions of "Ace Of Spades" and closer "Overkill" you could not tell the difference. During the show Lemmy was in good spirits, asking the crowd if it should be louder. He had it kicked up a notch or two each time and eventually a stage monitor was blown and needed a replacement. Like battlefield medics, Lemmy's crew swapped the faulty device with another one and the band did not miss a trick/note. One of the other amusing moments was when Lemmy announced some numbers from "Another Perfect Day" would be played and the audience cheered. He mused that they did not like it when it came out by what the hell. When band intros happen, Lemmy refers to Mickey Dee as the greatest drummer in the world and he is not far off. During "Terminal Show", Dee performs a powerful and energetic drum solo. He is not the prog technician that Mike Portnoy is, but he is certainly a powerhouse. I gauge him as a hitter along the lines of Tommy Aldridge meets John Bonham. I've enjoyed his work since King Diamond and it was so awesome to see him kicking ass in Motorhead.
In my opinion this show was so easy to have a good time at for it represented Hard Rock at its most primal. I really dug the song selection but was sad that "Iron First" or even "Iron Horse" and "We Are The Road Crew" were not done. Those are among my favorites. It was a complete surprise that they did not do "Motorhead", as I always thought that was the closer. However, Motorhead has constantly released new material year after year and it must become impossible to determine what gets played and what does not with each touring set. When I spoke to another fan saying they probably did those tunes the last time around, he informed me that the set was the same. Part of me was happy that I missed nothing, but the other side was bummed that I did not see them at that show anyways. Lemmy has that effect on people.
Shoot You In The Back
Love Me Like A Reptile
Over The Top
I Got Mine
In The Name Of Tragedy
Dancing On Your Grave
Terminal Show - Mickey Dee Drum Solo
Just 'Cos You Got The Power
Going To Brazil
Killed By Death
Ace Of Spades
Official Web site: www.imotorhead.com
Photos courtesy of Natalia Liaszkiewicz