Motörhead: Bad Magic

Lemmy cranks up the snot on album #22

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We know where we stand with Motörhead.

No nasty surprises, no calamitous changes of style, each new album a vital consolidation of that classic, ageless sound.

Nonetheless, after the initial thrill of new tunes, most ’head diehards will still revert to Ace Of Spades and Bomber in favour of anything new.

It seems unlikely that Bad Magic will change that, but it should. This is the most vicious, raw and fervently punk record that Motörhead have made since the 80s, with ear-flaying hooks, airtight song structures and snarling menace in abundance. From raging opener Victory Or Die and the rapid-fire mutations of Shoot Out All Of Your Lights through to Teach Them How To Bleed’s speed metal assault and Electricity’s insolent biker punk, this is the best evidence we could hope for that Lemmy is in good shape. Even the ballad, Till The End, ripples with malicious intent, and a closing demolition of the Stones’ Sympathy For The Devil is far more exciting than it should be. Just another Motörhead album? Nope, this one’s a keeper.

Dom Lawson has been writing for Hammer and Prog for 14 intermittently enjoyable years and is extremely fond of heavy metal, progressive rock, coffee and snooker. He listens to more music than you. And then writes about it.