A short time ago I saw a trusted friend in media sharing the post made by “Fast” Eddie Clark who was informing his friends, fans and followers that the former Motorhead drummer Phil “Philthy Animal” Taylor had passed away after an undisclosed illness. He was 61 years old.
Philthy was born Phil Taylor back in 1954 and was a part of the Mark IV era of the band Motorhead. For many Metal heads this was the bands most influential period and of the ten albums that Taylor recorded with them, there are diamonds among the gold in such works as “On Parole” (1975/1979), “Motörhead” (1977), “Overkill” (1979), “Bomber” (1979), “Ace of Spades” (1980), “No Sleep ’til Hammersmith” (1981), “Iron Fist” (1982), “Another Perfect Day” (1983), “Rock ‘n’ Roll” (1987), “1916” (1991) and “March ör Die” (1992). I didn’t listen to Motorhead straight away as I was a diehard KISS person with some Van Halen and Judas Priest following up but when I did with the incredible “Ace Of Spades” album and the follow-up live effort “No Sleep Til Hammersmmith” I was sold and it was largely because of Taylors drumming. As a young musician at the time, the speed and ferocity of his style just blew me away and once I had begun to enjoy it did my best to learn numerous tracks for my own bands. Sadly I would never see Motorhead in concert until many years later and by that time Taylor had been out of the lineup for quite a while. I admit to not following much of his career after Motorhead but I am still thankful for the pounding sounds that he gave us with the band for so many years. He inspired so many young drummers of the time and is to be commended by it. As the full details are still sketchy around his passing other than by saying “illness”, I will close out this memorial missive with a thank you for the music and a respectful bow of the head in condolence to his family, close friends and former band mates along with his many worldwide fans who are coming to terms with this sad news. Rest In Peace Philthy, you were like no one else.
Artist: Motorhead Title: “Rock ‘N Roll” (Deluxe Edition) Label: Sanctuary Records Release Date: 11/16/2010 Genre: Hard Rock/Heavy Metal Rating: 4/5
In 2006, Sanctuary Records was celebrating the 30th Anniversary of the band Motorhead by re-issuing and remastering their back catalog. The double CD sets come with the original album in a sonically upgraded form and a second CD that is loaded with bonus and unreleased tracks. When these editions first came out in 2006 they featured a slipcase cardboard sleeve while a later re-issue found a massive double foldout packaging with a clear sleeve keeping it in place. In 2010 we again get a double CD in a single CD casing, and the branding of Deluxe Edition is a raised imprint on the actual case and not a sleeve. They each include booklets that offer up topical information on the release as well as photos that are relevant to the timing of the particular album. While I am not sure about the reasoning in doing a re-issue for the third time I will admit that it is nice to have such a sleek edition on the shelves. My views of the remaster remain the same and are presented for you below. Continue reading “Rock ‘N Roll” (Deluxe Edition) by Motorhead→
Artist: Motorhead Title: “No Remorse” (Deluxe Edition) Label: Sanctuary Music Release Date: 11/16/2010 Genre: Hard Rock/Heavy Metal Rating: 5/5
I will admit it to you readers early that I was not one of the first of my friends to be into Motorhead and that even surprises me a little bit when I think about all the other bands that I liked around this time that were similar in some fashion. Granted I leaned more towards the Judas Priest, KISS and Van Halen stuff at this time while other friends were focusing on Savatage, Motorhead and Accept and since we always compared notes there was a healthy cross pollination of Metal interests being exchanged on a daily basis. “No Remorse” was actually my second Motorhead album and while it was a compilation release it was as a friend described it to be “the perfect primer of the bands work” and he was right. As soon as I bought my copy I would play it religiously and much to my parents chagrin. It was heavy, it was loud and it was relentless. It was just what Metal and Hard Rock were defined as being and the fans, if they were smart enough, were taking to it like gangbusters. “No Remorse” celebrates the bands earliest years and their tenure on the Bronze Records label. The original LP was a two record set and found some 24 tunes across its four sides. The CD that was released in 1992 on Roadracer Records (who the world now affectionately refers to as Roadrunner) omitted a couple of tunes on it to allow the fitting on a single CD. The Deluxe Edition returns us to a two disc motif and restores the omitted tunes, one of which was “Louie, Louie” which I would have been fine with never hearing again. Continue reading “No Remorse” (Deluxe Edition) by Motorhead→
Artist: Motorhead Title: “Live At Brixton ‘87” Label: Sanctuary Records Release Date: 6/7/2005 Genre: Hard Rock Rating: 3.5/5
Recorded in 1987, “Live At Brixton” is “yes another live Motorhead album”, and while it is one that can be a lot of fun to listen to; in the end it does not really stand up to its legendary predecessor “No Sleep Til’ Hammersmith” in my humble opinion. By 1987 there was a slight lineup shift and it was one that found drummer Pete Gill being replaced by original Motorhead skin basher Phil Taylor. It was nice to have another member of the bands “classic lineup” back in place and as expected he worked well with the guitar prowess of Phil Campbell and Wurzel. There is a very close similarity in terms of set list composition to the “No Sleep At All” live recording and that might put some people off who are seeking something a little bit more unique. However, on the same token if you are one of those tried and true Motorhead album collector’s this one might be perfect for your needs. In terms of band discography; the live show presented on this album was supporting their “Rock And Roll” album and as result there would be five numbers from this release performed. Continue reading “Live At Brixton ‘87” by Motorhead→
Artist: Motorhead Title: “Overkill” – Deluxe Edition (remaster) Label: Sanctuary Records Release Date: 2/10/2009 Genre: Hard Rock/Heavy Metal Rating: 4/5
In celebration of the bands 30th anniversary back in 2005, Sanctuary Records released remastered and expanded editions of many of the Motorhead classic albums. The double disc editions would feature the original album along with a second disc that was loaded with live tracks, rarities and outtakes that made them must haves for the discriminating fans music library. Full color booklets came par for the course with the remasters and they featured photos and topical information about the band during the time of the albums initial release that was really interesting historical reading. We reviewed a number of these albums when they first came out and since the musical content was the same we have re-presented our original comments about them below.
“Motorhead’s 1979 release of “Overkill” was going to be the album that found Lemmy, Philthy and Fast Eddie coming into their own unique sound and execution of their music. Cited by the band’s founder as “we are simply a Blues band that plays their music at 1000 miles per hour” the wheels were officially in motion as Motorhead began to dominate the building Heavy Rock scene. Those who were fans in the beginning realize that the band was never Metal, but more fast-paced and thunderous Rock and Roll in the purest form. I think this combination of straight forwardness and power met the level of appeal that it did purely because it was never masked as anything other than what it was. “Overkill” is filled with a number of classics that still remain a part of the bands set to this very day and the band’s playing was growing tighter with each album. Favorites on the album include “Stay Clean” and of course the title track as well as “No Class” and “Metropolis”. There was nothing subtle about Motorhead as a band and the music on this album celebrated that fact. The release year of 1979 also found this being a fitting headstone of the world of Disco music. Motorhead would open up the door for the 80’s Rock bands a little bit and their influence would begin to resonate in musicians all around the world. While not my favorite of the catalog, I do like this release and primarily recommend the remasters for their included extras. You can’t go wrong with them as much of these live recordings were unavailable for years. Motorhead was either a band that you loved or that you hated and it seemed like Lemmy would have you no matter what you thought. Grab this release to remember some of the early years and by all means – Stay Clean.” Continue reading “Overkill” – Deluxe Edition (remaster) by Motorhead→