Beer Drinkers and Hell Raisers

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Beer Drinkers and Hell Raisers
EP by Motörhead
Released 22 November 1980
Recorded 1977
Genre Heavy metal
Length 14:47
Label Big Beat
Producer Speedy Keen
Motörhead chronology
Ace of Spades
Beer Drinkers and Hell Raisers (EP)
St. Valentine's Day Massacre
Alternative cover
1983 French release of Beer Drinkers
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3/5 stars[1]

Beer Drinkers and Hell Raisers EP is a 1980 release of a 1977 recording session by the English band Motörhead.


The songs were recorded during the Motörhead album sessions but, considered outtakes, they only saw a belated release as the band's popularity was at a high with the commercial success of Ace of Spades. Nevertheless, this EP failed to make any impact on the UK charts. A few years later, label boss Ted Carroll would again raid his Chiswick Records archive to give a retrospective release to the 1978 live album What's Words Worth?. Lemmy's attitude towards Carroll's behaviour is "He's a great geezer and if it wasn't for Ted there wouldn't be any Motörhead anyway, so Ted has carte blanche, he can do what he wants with the old catalogue."[2]


On the original ZZ Top version of "Beer Drinkers and Hell Raisers", the vocals are traded between guitarist Billy Gibbons and bassist Dusty Hill, with the two alternating each line. For Motörhead's version, this was replicated by bassist Lemmy and guitarist "Fast" Eddie Clarke, marking not only the vocal debut of Clarke, but one of the few occasions on which he sang lead on a Motörhead song (other times being on "Step Down", "I'm Your Witchdoctor" and "Emergency"). No other Motörhead versions of this track have ever been released. "On Parole" had previously been recorded by the band in 1976 for their debut album On Parole, and a Larry Wallis version was released as a b-side to the 1977 Stiff Records "Police Car" single. It was a consistent number in the band's setlist, as can be heard on What's Words Worth?, though it was dropped after 1979 as the band continued to write and perform more of their own, original material. "I'm Your Witchdoctor" ("a great song," Lemmy pronounces in his 2002 autobiography) is a cover of a John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers song, which the band also performed in their early 1977/8 sets. "Instro" is the only original composition here and is a rare instrumental from the band; perhaps the lack studio time prevented them from writing lyrics and recording vocals, or maybe they deemed it unworthy of completion.

The vinyl EP was issued as a 7" pressing (NS61) and as a 12" pressing (SWT61), both formats were pressed in black, blue, orange, pink and white vinyl and there was also a 7" 'Radio Play' Sleeve.[3] Along with the "Motorhead" single's B-side, "City Kids", the tracks from this EP were included on the CD release of Motörhead.[3] In 1982 Big Beat Records released a French edition that added the extra tracks "Vibrator", "White Line Fever", "City Kids", "Keep Us on the Road", "Lost Johnny" and "Motorhead". It was released in the usual black vinyl (A 120 174) and as a picture disc (PD 120 174).[3]


In his 2011 book Overkill: The Untold Story of Motorhead, biographer Joel McIver derides the EP: "This is an early example of many, many attempts by the various record companies who ruined, I mean handled Motorhead's career to mould them into less sophisticated versions of themselves."

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Length
1. "Beer Drinkers and Hell Raisers" (Billy Gibbons, Dusty Hill, Frank Beard) 3:27
2. "On Parole" (Larry Wallis) 5:57
3. "Instro" (Eddie Clarke, Ian Kilmister, Phil Taylor) 2:27
4. "I'm Your Witchdoctor" (John Mayall) 2:58



  1. ^ Allmusic review
  2. ^ Shaw, Harry. Lemmy... In his own words. Omnibus Press (c) 2002. p. 37. ISBN 0-7119-9109-X. 
  3. ^ a b c Burridge, Alan Illustrated Collector's Guide to Motorhead Published: 1995, Collector's Guide Publishing ISBN 0-9695736-2-6.