First Bomber In Japan (Calm & Storm 033)
Shibuya Kokaido, Tokyo Japan June 26, 1982
(66:17) Opening, Iron Fist, Heart Of Stone, Shoot You In The Back, The Hammer, “Sorry, We have blown up the PA”, Jailbait, Go To Hell, (Don’t Need) Religion, Hoochie Coochie Man, America, (We Are) The Road Crew, Bite The Bullet, The Chase Is Better Than The Catch, Overkill, Bomber, Motorhead
By 1982 Motörhead was building a strong following by releasing a string of great records including Bomber, Ace Of spades, and their live opus No Sleep Till Hammersmith. Trouble was brewing as guitarist Fast Eddie Clark was not happy with the bands collaboration with The Plasmatics and during the US tour in support of Iron Fist abruptly left the band. Amazingly the band drafts former Thin Lizzy guitarist Brian Robbo Roberston and continued the tour and who would go on with the band to record the under appreciated Another Perfect Day record the following year before Robbo too would leave the band.
The recording featured here is a complete concert from the bands first visit to Japan and is culled from the vast Miracle Man archives. It is a very good audience recording, slightly distant with all instruments and voice featured nicely in the mix. It also sounds good at loud volumes, precisely the way Motorhead should be heard. The band storm the stage with Iron Fist and Robertson is ripping into the solos via his wah petal with a furry, the band are energetic and need to be, its a fast paced concert, the song leads right into Heart of Stone from the same record.
Lemmy greats Tokyo and introduces Shoot You In The Back from Ace Of Spades, it features some great playing from Robbo who continues to dazzle with his solos and the band sound very tight and cohesive. Another from the Spades record follows, and is dedicated to philthy Phil Taylor and the band blow into a bludgeoning version of The Hammer. Lemmy style of playing provides an incredible rhythmic background for the music and at times is like old school AC/DC where the band provides such a solid backbone from which the leads plays solo over. After the song Lemmy promptly tells the crowd that they have blown up the PA and will be taking a short break while it is sorted out.
There is a brief pause in the tape and after some brief tunning the band go right back to the audience preverbal throat with Jailbait, the bands ode to underage love. More from Iron Fist follows, the latter is Don’t Need) Religion, a song that Lemmy introduces it by saying that he does not like religion ! Some great Lemmy philosophy that I am sure the audience does not fully understand. Another dedication is next, this time to Brian Robertson, as the band goes into their take on the Willie Dixon blues classic Hoochie Coochie Man. Clocking in at over six minutes this is like a live epic for the band and gives Robbo a chance to stretch out a little. He has ample time to solo and makes great use of it, Motorhead has always been a rock and roll band and can go from playing very fast to jamming with ease.
Lemmy gives a great introduction for America by saying he writes a song about every country he visits but has not had a chance to write one about Japan since he has only been there for one day ! typical Lemmy sense of humor. From here on out the band proceed to really hammer the audience into submission, the rip into two more from Ace Of Spades, Bite The Bullet and The Chase and delve into the bands back catalog with a decent version of Overkill. One of my favorite songs I think this version lacks a little as Robertson does not quite get the feeling of the solo down. He more than makes up for it with a rousing version on Bomber and the band plays the solitary encore of Motorhead and ultimately the concert ends with the Bomber sounds and air raid sirens in fitting Motorhead fashion. Fast and well paced concert, a joy to listen to.
The packaging is full color inserts with live shot I am assuming where done during the tour and as a bonus a copy of the ticket stub from the concert as well as the gig poster (the pic on the poster still includes Fast Eddie). The short lived line up of Lemmy, Taylor, and Robertson was short lived but the music they produced together has kind of a cult following. This release provides a wonderful snapshot of the period of the bands history and a great recording to enjoy.If you liked this review, buy me a cup of joe. (Suggested: $3 a shot or $7.5 for a double)