You've got to love Lemmy Kilmister. At
69 years old, Lemmy still rocks like a hellhound is on his trail. He's
partied harder than most everyone this side of Keith Richards and he's
survived. He's one of the rare rock singers who can still pull off mutton
chops. He's not a complete dick like so many of his speed metal
counterparts – for example, James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich of Metallica or
Dave Mustaine of Megadeth. In fact, every time Lemmy opens his mouth to say
something in an interview, he sounds like the kind of guy you'd want to
Even though his band is currently
celebrating their 40th anniversary, they still sound skin tight. More
importantly, they still sound completely relevant. Motörhead may still be
old school enough to have an umlaut in their name, but Lemmy's band can
still kick the asses of bands young enough to be his grandchildren. Grace
Slick once famously said that there is nothing in the world sadder than an
old woman trying to sing rock and roll music. Lemmy is solid proof that
statement does not stretch out to men.
is not reinventing the wheel for Motörhead, and thank goodness for that.
Bad Magic would fit in snuggly anywhere in the band's catalogue, a
timeless slab of molten rock that could have been done in the 70s, 80s, 90s
or beyond. It's a pretty set template by now, thundering guitars, smashing
drums, overdrive tempos and Lemmy's vaguely British-accented caterwauling.
And no fucking ballads, dammit!
In fact, "Til the End" is as close as
they get to a slow song, a somewhat more mellow (well, mellow counted on a
Motörhead curve) and surprisingly effective arena rock-vibed jam. This is
the sound that Guns 'N' Roses were trying, unsuccessfully, to capture in
Use Your Illusion I & II.
However, most of the songs here are more
along the lines of the opener "Victory or Die," a stomping one-chord-wonder
that sprints so quickly and slams so hard that it would have worn out the
Ramones in their prime. Quick and dirty songs like "Fire Storm Hotel" live
up to their aggressive titles, and yet beyond the instrumental assault there
are some truly catchy tunes which will bring you back.
They understand the importance of a
melody to make something like "Choking on Your Screams" and "Electricity"
stand out in the hardcore metal scene. Motörhead takes their rocking
seriously, but still, Lemmy has the sense of humor to close out "Teach Them
How To Bleed" with a dramatic outro that I'm almost positive is borrowed
from Spinal Tap.
The album closes out with a stomping
cover of the Stones' "Sympathy for the Devil," a song that fits the band so
perfectly that it is rather shocking they had never covered it on disk
40 years and 21 albums into their
career, Motörhead is still effortlessly cool.
Jay S. Jacobs
Copyright ©2015 PopEntertainment.com. All rights reserved. Posted: July 10, 2015.