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Motorhead's On Parole was the debut album that wasn't. Now it's out again

Motorhead in 1975
(Image credit: Cleopatra Records / Getty Images)

Motorhead's On Parole album is being reissued for National Album Day. The album – recorded in 1975 – was originally intended to be the band's debut album, but didn't see the light of day until 1979.

On Parole was recorded at Rockfield Studios in Wales with producer Dave Edmunds, but he didn’t last long before being replaced by Fritz ‘Deep Fat’ Fryer, who had made his name as guitarist with 60s chart-toppers The Four Pennies. 

The band's then-label United Artists couldn't see any potential commercial value in the album, and shelved On Parole until October 1979, by which time Motorhead (Chiswick, August 1977) and Overkill (Bronze, May 1979) had established the band as a success.

The new version of the album adds six bonus tracks (four of which surfaced on EMI's 1997 reissue of the album), and comes wrapped in the artwork that accompanied No Parole's original Canadian release. 

The new edition also features new sleevenotes from original Mortorhead drummer Lucas Fox, a founder member of the band alongside frontman Lemmy and former Pink Fairies guitarist Larry Wallis

The first single to be taken from the album is an alternative take of Iron Horse / Born To Lose. 

On Parole is released on October 9. National Album Day, which aims to celebrate the album as a format, is on October 10.

On Parole tracklist

Motorhead (2020 Remaster)
On Parole (2020 Remaster)
Vibrator (2020 Remaster)
Iron Horse / Born to Lose (2020 Remaster)
City Kids (2020 Remaster)
Fools (2020 Remaster)
The Watcher (2020 Remaster)
Leaving Here (2020 Remaster)
Lost Johnny (2020 Remaster) 

Bonus Tracks 
On Parole (Original Take)
City Kids (Original Take)
Iron Horse / Born to Lose (Original Take)
Motorhead (Original Take)
Leaving Here (Original Take)
Fools (Demo Version)

Motorhead - On Parole

(Image credit: Parlophone Records)
Fraser Lewry

Online Editor at Louder/Classic Rock magazine since 2014. 35 years in music industry, online for 22. Also bylines for: Metal Hammer, Prog Magazine, The Word Magazine, The Guardian, The New Statesman, Saga, Music365. Former Head of Music at Xfm Radio, A&R at Fiction Records, early blogger, ex-roadie, published author. Thinks any situation can be improved by the introduction of cats. Favourite Serbian trumpeter: Dejan Petrović.