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  MOTÖRHEAD HAVE TOTALLY CLEANED YOUR CLOCK WITH THEIR THIRTEENTH AND FINAL OVER THE TOP LIVE RELEASE

Joe Geesin

joe geesin


motorhead

Finally, 'Clean Your Clock' has arrived and it just has to be one of the finest ever closures to an era, a very special double live album from a band who are iconic, genre defining and quite simply, monstrous.

When frontman, founder and bassist/vocalist Ian Fraser "Lemmy" Kilmister passed away in late December last year after a short illness, British legends Motörhead came to a sad and sudden end. The band were supporting their latest album 'Bad Magic' and had already had to cancel or cut short some shows due to Lemmy's failing health; over 50 years of rock n' roll and hard living finally caught up with him and the world lost a legend, a character, an icon, and one of the greatest rock n' roll musicians and writers ever.

A fitting tribute was paid by the remaining Motörhead members, guitarist Phil Campbell and drummer Mickey Dee, alongside long-time associates Saxon at the recent Golden Gods awards and you can read all about what was a very memorable night right here.

Lemmy really was a real one of a kind who could even make the Nolan Sisters rock and if you've ever heard the Young & Moody Band's 'Don't Do That' you'll know exactly what I mean.

'Clean Your Clock' was recorded over two nights in Munich, Germany in November 2015 and these shows were, as it unfortunately transpired, Motörhead's last officially recorded performances. Ever since their very early days they have always been a force of nature live, as demonstrated by the legendary 'Golden Years Live EP' and possibly the best live album of all time, 'No Sleep Till Hammersmith' which went straight into the UK album charts at number one in the days when the charts really did mean something and our type of music was about as popular in the mainstream as a pork chop in a synagogue.

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Motörhead have now officially released thirteen live albums in total including the magnificent 'No Sleep At All' in 1988, 'Everything Louder Than Everyone Else' from 1999 and the double volume package that is 'The Wörld Is Ours' and now this proud collection is completed by 'Clean Your Clock', the very final live Motörhead release.

And what a whopping package this release is too.

The live show here sees the band open with the classic 'Bomber', a great and distinctive track which sees the band on instant good form. If you are new to Motörhead, the video shows you just how much of the sound comes from Lemmy's bass, often including the main riff, allowing the guitarist to either augment or solo over the top.



'Metropolis', another early track, follows giving the crowd exactly what they want and then we are treated to one of the highlights from 'Bad Magic', 'When The Sky Comes Looking For You', to the chant of "Lemmy, Lemmy, Lemmy" while 'Over The Top' gets the mosh pit going and it's dangerous in there until Phil temporarily calms it down with an atmospheric guitar solo that leads into 'The Chase Is Better Than The Catch', another firm live favourite.

'Lost Woman Blues' from 2013s 'Aftershock' shows Motörhead's "mellower" side and a surprise inclusion is 'Rock It' from 'Another Perfect Day'. Lemmy responds to the cheers from his introduction with "you didn't buy it back then, did you!"

Bowel rumbler 'Orgasmatron' is as gruff as it is hypnotic and solid as ever while 'Doctor Rock', from the same album, is pure Metal rock n' roll at its very best and is dedicated to Philthy Animal Taylor who had passed away the week before these concerts. It's a major high point of this collection and no doubt at all, this song will make you strut.

motorhead

There are many more treats to be had including 'Just 'Cos You Got The Power' and 'No Class' which is introduced by the main man as "another oldie but mouldy".

Main set closer 'Ace Of Spades' needs no introduction as it is one of the most notable, memorable, iconic and defining singles by anyone, ever. It's always a crowd pleaser and rightly so.

Back onstage for the encore and the "Blues Delta Phase", as Lemmy puts it, sees 'Whorehouse Blues' played as an uptempo acoustic number with Mikkey on guitar too and a bassless Lemster giving a parp on his harmonica; it's one track to keep going back to as it's a brilliant version of an overlooked classic. The set closes with 'Overkill', finishing proceedings with a flurry.

Motörhead always were overkill and the Lemmy feature on the DVD/blu-ray is well worth watching too.

motorhead

Performance wise Mickey Dee and Phil Campbell are all over this; but it's painful to see the close-up shots of Lemmy because as much as he plays and sounds great, he does look tired and it's obvious he was not in the very peak of health but like the true warrior that he is, he rocked hard right up until the very end.

Throughout all the ups and downs, line-up and label changes and other difficulties Motörhead went through over the years, the fanbase remained as passionate and as loyal as ever and will doubtless continue to do so, even though the band is no more.

The 'Clean Your Clock' package is in the same vein as another UDR release, Saxon's 'Battering Ram', and it's the dog's bollocks in every way. In the box is a gatefold coloured vinyl 2LP, a CD and DVD in a gatefold pop up card sleeve with innersleeves, booklet, and slipcase, a Blu-ray which also contains bonus material and a Motörhead pin. Other not so elaborate versions of the package are available.

motorhead

It's by no means the best recording in the world and it's far from faultless but Motörhead were never about musical perfection and while the set list from this sixteen track show, recorded over two nights, will invite discussion, it's an excellent and fitting finale and close enough to the perfect final word and a perfect representation of Motörhead's last ever tour.

Rock n' roll with a bit of blues, hard rock, a bit of speed and a lot of Jack Daniels; Motörhead were rock n' roll right to the very end and never was their spirit more alive than when they were on tour. An essential addition to all Motörhead collections.

Tracklist, double vinyl LP
Side 1
Bomber
Stay Clean
Metropolis
When The Sky Comes Looking For you
Over The Top

Side 2
Guitar Solo
The Chase Is Better Than The Catch
Lost Woman Blues
Rock It

Side 3
Orgasmatron
Dr Rock
Just 'Cos You Got The Power

Side 4
No Class
Ace Of Spades
Whorehouse Blues
Overkill

DVD/blu-ray
Bomber
Stay Clean
Metropolis
When The Sky Comes Looking For You
Over The Top
Guitar Solo
The Chase Is Better Than The Catch
Lost Woman Blues
Rock It
Orgasmatron
Dr Rock
Just 'Cos You Got The Power
No Class
Ace Of Spades
Whorehouse Blues
Overkill



And here's a little bit of Motörhistory...

Lemmy had started out as a roadie in the 1960s and had stints with The Nice and Jimi Hendrix before forging a career as a rhythm guitarist and gained some prominence with The Rocking Vicars before he found fame after switching to bass upon joining Hawkwind in the early 70s. Hawkwind's biggest ever hit was, and still is, 'Silver Machine' with Lemmy's hypnotic lead vocal a key part of this mega space-rock single.

He appeared on several classic Hawkwind albums, including 'Warriors On The Edge Of Time', but was sacked from the band after being arrested in Canada for alleged drug possession, something he once described as "being pushed off a tall building for being afraid of heights".

It turned out to be the best thing that ever happened to him because just days later he formed a new band and named it Bastard, however a little later that same year, 1975, Lemmy renamed his new outfit Motörhead after the last song he wrote and recorded with Hawkwind who released it as a single b-side and in case you didn't know, Motörhead is American slang for "speed freak", and we're not talking about velocity here.

Motörhead played a unique style that was, and remained, fast and furious and contained Metal, punk, blues and rock n' roll undertones. It was ground breaking as much as influential and genre defining.

Lucas Fox and Larry Wallis appear on the debut album 'On Parole' which was initially shelved by United Artists but released a couple of years later after the second album and self-titled album which was released on Chiswick. It was rough and tough and a hybrid of Metal, rock n' roll and punk which delivered a sound that confused the hell out of record labels.

And when Motörhead signed to Bronze Records in 1978 that big success started to arrive. With drummer Phil "Animal" Taylor and guitarist Fast Eddie Clarke, the albums 'Bomber' and 'Overkill' saw a huge surge of interest and even some chart success with both album's respective title tracks, however it was 1980s 'Ace Of Spades' and the following live album 'No Sleep 'Till Hammersmith' that saw the band top the charts and reach a national audience. The former's title track is a live and radio staple recognised by most, while 'No Sleep...' is undisputably one of the greatest live albums ever released.

Collaborations with both Girlschool and Wendy O'Williams brought more acclaim but disagreements over the latter led to Fast Eddie's departure. Thin Lizzy's Brian Robertson was drafted in to replace Eddie but the one album the erratic Scotsman appeared on, 1982s 'Another Perfect Day', alienated aome fans and the tour even more so, despite the songs on 'Another...' being technically superb.

But you can't get away with wearing ballet shoes and pink satin shorts while playing for Motörhead at a biker gig and it was all change for the defining compilation 'No Remorse' which included 'Killed By Death' as one of four new tracks recorded by the now four-piece outfit which included former Saxon drummer Pete Gill with guitarists Phil Campbell and Wurzel alongside Lemmy.

Motörhead continued to release acclaimed albums, including essentials 'Orgasmatron', '1916', 'March Or Die', 'Bastards', 'Overnight Sensation' and 'We Are Motörhead'.

Mikkey Dee joined the band in 1993 and Würzel's departure in 1995 saw Motörhead revert to being a three-piece and the line-up of Lemmy, Phil and Mikkey remained constant right up until the end and is the longest serving line-up by a long way.


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