Posts Tagged ‘motorhead’
What a weekend! As has been discussed on this site ad nauseum, I am a huge Odin fan. I love their debut Don’t Take No For An Answer and the subsequent albums all had some killer tunes on them. When I found out in the Spring that Odin was doing a show, I had to go. I’ve wanted to see them since 1986. I had a chance to see them 3 or 4 years ago but stuff came up and I couldn’t go. It almost happened again this time too. I had purchased my concert ticket right as they went on sale but waited on buying my plane tickets as right around the time of the show announcement, I was told that I’d be getting laid off soon. So I held off as I didn’t want to spend the extra money. Fortunately I was only out of work for a month and was living on the severance pay that my former company had given me. As soon as I got a new job I booked my flight to LA.
Twenty-five years is a long wait to see a band. Sit tight, this post may take a while. Maybe not.
The original plan was to stay with a good friend out there but with my flight getting delayed because of Hurricane Irene and some other unavoidable happenstances, I just decided to get a hotel in Hollywood. Good move. As soon as I landed in Burbank, I got my rental car and headed straight to Hollywood and my hotel on Santa Monica Blvd. I checked in, freshened up a bit and headed out for the night. It was about 10:15PM or so when I hailed a cab and headed straight for the Rainbow Bar and Grill. Again, good move. As I was having a few drinks at the inside bar, the guy next to me was talking to the bartender about Hurricane playing at Key Club just a few doors down. Hurricane! I always liked the song Hurricane and a few others of theirs. While they were a pretty boy type of band, they were definitely a cut above bands like Poison, Warrant and much of the other terrible glammy sleaze that plagued LA (and the world) in the late 80s.
I used to own Take Want You Want and one shaped EP on vinyl. In the late 1990s I started selling off my record collection. They were listed on eBay and Kelly Hansen, the singer for Hurricane, had gotten in touch with me to work a trade for those records. Of course I
was skeptical, but after he called me and we talked, I knew it was legit. In trade, he sent me some unopened tapes and CDs and signed one of them for me. Hard to believe that some bands don’t have their own material…same thing happened one other time with Frankie Banali. I had a WASP EP that he didn’t have from the Headless Children album. I had 2 so I gave him one.
OK, let’s get back on track here. The dude at the bar was the show promoter. He gave me his card and told me to hand it to the door guy and I’d get in for free. I offered to pay my way in but he insisted. Cool! I finished my drink and went right over to Key Club as Hurricane was getting ready to go on. I go in with no troubles, grab a beer and hit the floor. Hurricane comes on and they open with Hurricane. Sarzo and Cavazo were still in the band and I think Kelly’s brother was on drums. Of course Kelly sings for Foreigner now. The new singer is Andrew Freeman who used to play guitar for theOffspring. He sounded great and played some guitar as well. I was really impressed with them overall. I caught a little more than half of the set and then made my way back over to the Rainbow. Luckily for me Lemmy was there (of course). I got to say hi again. He remembered me from Austin. We only spoke for a minute as he was only taking a short break from the video game machine. I love the Rainbow. Such a cool place with so much history.
Being almost 2AM California time, it was almost 4AM my time, so I was pretty worn out. I grabbed a cab and went back to the hotel. I watched the weather channel’s coverage of the hurricane until I fell asleep.
After only about 4 or maybe 5 hours of sleep, I got up and muddled around town for a bit before driving out to San Bernardino to meet an old friend for lunch. It was great to see her and the Thai food was tasty. From there I headed back into Hollywood to catch Odin’s soundcheck and to get Randy O and Aaron Samson to sign the book. I got to watch them do 2 or three songs, got my signatures and hung out with Shawn and Jeff Duncan for a little bit before they left to go back home. I became friends with them a few years back when their band DC4 played here in Austin. What a band and a great bunch of guys! I really wanted to have dinner with Shawn and his fiance but I was so wiped out and just wanted to go take a nap. So we parted ways and I headed back for an all-too-short nap.
When I originally bought my ticket, I went ahead and bought a spare as I figured a friend from Austin or someone I know in LA would want to go. Luckily I happened to meet Regina in Austin a few weeks prior to the show through some good friends of mine and I mentioned that I’d be out there for the show. I asked her to go and she graciously said yes. So after waking up from my nap, I took a quick shower and grabbed a cab for the Rainbow again. I wanted some of their pizza. It’s my favorite ever. I get there and the door guy remembered me from the night before. He waived the cover and gave me 2 drink tickets. SCORE! It was still a little early so seating was pretty wide open. I sat at the outside bar as it was a nice evening. The bartender remembered me and even what I had been drinking the night before and automatically poured one for me. Peroni on draft by the way. I ordered a small pizza and it came out pretty quickly. The small is huge. I met a few people while waiting for my food and we were having a great time talking shit. They were super fun and luckily helped me eat the pizza. After the beers and pizza were done, I paid out and headed over to The Whisky to see the reason I made this trip…ODIN. Regina met up with me shortly after and we went in. I ran into some folks that I knew, mainly the other DC4 guys, Matt Duncan and Rowan Robertson. I love Rowan. He’s such a nice guy and we always have a great time hanging out. (Your arrow, siiiir.) Saw a few other folks that I knew and we hung out upstairs until Odin was about to come on. Luckily Regina didn’t mind getting in the crowd. We were about 2 or 3 people from the stage in the center.
The lights go down and Odin comes out to a loud roar from fans, including me. This show definitely brought out something in me that doesn’t happen that often. I see a lot of shows…A LOT. But very few bands actually get me “juiced”. Iron Maiden, Testament, Motorhead and a few others do. Odin did. The music nerd in me came out completely. Poor Regina. haha. Odin opened with 12 O’Clock High. It was great. Their setlist was great and Randy’s voice was in good shape. A lot of the guys who used to hit those high notes back in the old days can’t do it now. Randy hit a lot of his. And the ones he knew he couldn’t hit, he didn’t try. While they played most of the EP, The Writer and Solar Eye weren’t played. Well, a piece of Solar Eye was played which gave Jeff some solo time.
I love California, or at least SoCal. Never been that far north, but the LA/Hollywood area sets me right every time I am there. It’s beautiful. I almost moved there in 1997 and still do the “what if…” game sometimes.
After the show, Regina and I head back over to the Rainbow for a final drink. It was fun closing it down. The valet brought her car around and we drove around and foraged for food around town. We grabbed some fast food and headed back to my hotel. She dropped me off, I went to my room and went straight to bed, completely wiped out again.
The next morning was checkout, a drive around Hollywood for a bit and then off to the airport. Absolutely one of the best weekends I have had in a long time thanks to Odin, DC4, Hollywood, and my LA friends, new and old. Good times. If/when Odin plays again, I’ll try to be there for sure.
Published reports are stating that former Motorhead guitarist, “Würzel” has passed away. He was a damned good guitarist and during the brief time I met him in 1992, he was very nice and very quiet.
This was my first Motorhead show and the only reason I even cared to go was because Mikkey Dee was in the band. At this time I really didn’t give 2 hoots about Motorhead although I did like the 1916 album. Daniel and I got to the show a little early and got to spend time with Mikkey and Phil Campbell (aka Zoom at the time for what he stated as legal issues with an ex). It was cool because Mikkey remembered me from the year prior when we hung out on the Don Dokken solo tour. I remember Wurzel being there and he signed my ticket stub, but he was really quiet and didn’t hang out with us. This was also my first time meeting Lemmy. It lasted all of about 9 seconds. I handed him my 1916 cassette (!!!) cover and asked him to sign it. He mumbled something unintelligible to me, shook my hand and I thanked him and walked away.
I didn’t notice until the other day that we had free tickets. I’m not sure how that came about but I think Steve from Skinnies Records. If so, thanks Steve!
Local band Sea of Souls opened up. I will admit that I liked them the first time I saw them (not sure which show it was), but they seemingly opened up for every band that came through town and I quickly got sick of them. When Motorhead hit the stage, it was pretty intense. Mikkey brings a high level of energy to any band he is in. Since this show, I haven’t missed a chance to see them live. Mainly because of the drums but over time I became a fan of the band as well. I’ve met Mikkey a few times since then and he’s always a class act.
Admittedly I’m a latecomer fan when it comes to Motorhead. The first album of theirs I ever owned was 1916 and had really only heard a few songs by them throughout the 80s, Ace of Spades being the main one and a few friends of mine and I used to joke on it pretty hard. It wasn’t until getting exposed to them in the early 2000s that I really decided to give them a chance, mainly because a band that I was in decided to play Cradle to the Grave. I had seen them live prior to this, but mainly just to see Mikkey Dee.
In 2004 when I decided to put together a Motorhead tribute band, I was listening to a lot of their 80s material and I think it’s a pretty strong decade for them, much stronger than the 90s and 2000s for sure. The early version of the tribute band did 2 songs from 1987′s Rock ‘n’ Roll, the title track and Eat The Rich. We only played them in a few shows and they fell by the wayside. I’d like to add Rock ‘n’ Roll back to the set. I really dig the mid-80s era stuff as it seems to be more melodic on a lot of levels than the 70s era. For me, there’s not really a bad song on here. Blackheart and Stone Deaf In The USA are 2 big highlights for this album.
I also love the album cover, one of their best for sure.
To the hardcore “Aces of Spades-on-back” crew, I know this is blasphemy. And I’m ok with that. In general I prefer that stuff too, but this is a quality album.
As many of my lovely readers may have heard from my previous post or via Blabbermouth, yesterday (March 8, 2011) was declared Motörhead Day in Austin, TX by our mayor. Read yesterday’s post to get the precursor for this one.
I got off work and rushed home to get things together for potentially meeting Motörhead before their show. I’m waiting on Dave and his son in front of Stubb’s and see awesome photog Jay West. I tell him what’s going on and said I’d try to get him back there with us to get a photo of those guys with the Motörhead Day Proclamation (click for photo). Dave and his son walk up and I send a message to my pal who works security for Motörhead. He finds us outside and escorts to the “backstage” area of Stubb’s where Lemmy, Mikkey and some of the crew were hanging out. This was right after their soundcheck.
Lemmy’s sitting at the door flipping through a food magazine and Mikkey stands up to greet us. Phil was nowhere to be found, unfortunately. Mikkey reads it then Dave tells me to give it to Lemmy for a read. I explained what it was and he sat and read the whole thing. He stood up and said something like, “This is neat. I love playing Austin. Thank you very much” We shake hands and Jay snaps a few quick photos. I mentioned to Lemmy about meeting him after the movie premier last year and mentioned my Another Perfect Day tattoo backpiece. He said, “Ah yes, I told you that you should have picked a better album, right?” haha. “Yes sir, you did.” Lemmy seemed tired and later that evening during the set, Phil mentioned on mic that he wasn’t feeling well, so Phil did much of the talking between songs. Also, if you’ve seen the movie, read interviews or ever met Lemmy, he’s pretty much indifferent about stuff like this, but it was great that he and Mikkey allowed us to come back for a few minutes and share our joy with them. Added bonus for me was getting Lemmy and Mikkey’s signatures in my book. FINALLY!
So that was that. Mikkey gave Dave’s son, Kameron, a can of Coca-Cola as we were leaving and he says, “I’m never opening this can…ever.” Awesome. I understand that sentiment as I still have an unopened bottle Heineken that Nicko McBrain signed for me in 1988.
Good times. All of us were elated after this. It was fun and glad that it all worked out for all of us. I ran the book home and went to dinner with some friends. I had no interest in seeing Valient Thorr again or in seeing Clutch. I got back to the venue with about 4 Clutch songs left. BORING. I hadn’t listened to them in years and remembered why last night. Oh well. It was Motörhead Day and all I cared about was seeing Lemmy and the boys tear it up like they always do.
They hit the stage right at 9PM. Lemmy opens by saying, “We’re Motörhead…and we play rock and roll.” Then they go
right into a great version of We Are Motörhead. Great song to open with! The band was tight throughout the whole show. Phil was more animated than I had seen in the last few shows. Lemmy’s tone and playing were awesome. He’s very unique. If you’ve seen the Lemmy movie DVD there’s a bonus section in there about how he plays his bass. He’s usually playing power chords and it just gives his sound that much more grind. At 60+, the man can still kick ass. His voice sounded better than last year as well. Then there’s Mikkey. All you see is hair and hands and cymbals moving. He was awesome as always. Easily in my top 5 drummers of all time. Motörhead rules live, period.
The highlight of their set for me was I Got Mine. It’s from my favorite Motörhead album and it’s just a great song. Of course they closed the main part of their set with Ace of Spades and Overkill was the encore.
Metal Dave from 2Fast2Die said before they went on, “What a crusty looking crowd.” Definitely. Motörhead draws folks from a lot of different crowds. They are also one of the bands where it seems to be ok to wear their shirts when you go see them live. It’s always been stated (right or wrong, silly really) that you shouldn’t wear the shirt for the band you are going to see. Motörhead and Maiden seem to be exceptions to that rule. I saw some nice vintage shirts there as well.
It was a great show and I’m glad it sold out. Lem’s not getting any younger and no telling when his juice is going to run out…hopefully never! Go see this tour!
There was one major thing missing…Their fron of house sound engineer Hobbs! Where was he? Talk about a crusty old bastard. He rules!
Setlist as I remember it and a bit out of order:
- We Are Motörhead
- Stay Clean
- Get Back In Line
- I Got Mine
- Over The Top
- The Chase Is Better Than The Catch
- Rock Out
- I Know How to Die
- In The Name of Tragedy
- Just Cos You Got The Power
- Killed By Death
- Going To Brazil
- Ace of Spades
All photos below by Jay West Photography. Click to enlarge.