Music Reviews
Motörhead

Motörhead

The Löst Tapes Volume 1 – 5

BMG

Too much of a good thing? That describes this massive 99-track compilation of Lemmy Kilmister and his boys covering shows they performed in Malmö, Madrid, Heilbronn, Norwich, and a few other venues.

The audio quality is “authentic,” and by that, I mean they recorded the shows on cassette tapes. Clearly, this was not intended to be an album release, rather I assume the band was recording it for internal use. Maybe someone came in a bit early, maybe a level was off or a treble set too high. But that’s OK if you’re a dedicated superfan or you collect bootlegs.

How addicted need you be? Let me count the ways: On this collection there are four versions of “Motörhead,” five of “Iron Fist,” four of “Ace of Spades,” and four of “Stay Clean.” I’m not sure why “Iron Fist is” here five times, perhaps there was an encore. The “once-only” tracks include “Silver Machine” from Lemmy’s first band Hawkwind. Another pair of rarities here are “Damage Case” and “Dead Men Tell No Tales.”

The repeat tracks cover the span from 1984 to 2008, so those tunes give you a stop-motion view of the band’s progression. The band sounds surprisingly constant, in my humble opinion. Lemmy and his boys may have done a ton of drugs, but the sound remains quite stable. I suspect that comes from the regular touring schedule, dedication to their art, and fan feedback, which is always enlightening. While relatively consistent, the overall quality of the sound here is a B- or a C+.

There is no effort to make this collection a quality recording, but rather a record for internal consumption and fine tuning of the show. Thus, you are not purchasing this collection because of its great audio quality, but because of the raw energy of the live performance. And I know, no matter how much you deny it, you will be screaming “Ace of Spades!” as you blast the stereo and speed down the freeway.

I hope there are no backups.

Motörhead


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