Ace of Spades is the fourth album by the British heavy metal band Motörhead. Released in 1980, it reached #4 on the UK charts and was the first of the band's album releases to feature a photo of the band on the cover.
In August and September 1980, the band were recording at Jackson's Studios in Rickmansworth with producer Vic Maile for the "Ace of Spades" sessions for Bronze Records. As a preview of the forthcoming album and tour, the "Ace of Spades" single was released on October 27, 1980 and by early November had reached #15. The album was released on November 8, 1980 and sailed to #4 in the UK album charts, prompting Bronze to press a limited number of albums in gold vinyl, changing the catalogue number from BRON to BRONG for the edition. The 'Arizona desert-style' pictures used on the album sleeve and tour booklet cover were taken during a photosession at a sandpit in Barnet.
On January 28, 2003, Silverline released a DVD-Audio version of the album. On March 28, 2005 the album was released on DVD by Eagle Vision, the in-depth look at the making of the album includes interviews with Lemmy, Phil Taylor and Eddie Clarke.
The album has been described as "one of the best metal albums by any band, ever, period", and has become a significantly influential 'hard rock classic'. Despite the band always referring to their music as rock 'n roll in the same vein as their heroes Eric Clapton and Jimi Hendrix, the album, and particularly its title track have been considered amongst the most influential in the development of thrash metal. (read more...)
Lemmy (born Ian Fraiser Kilmister on December 24, 1945, also known as Ian Willis, Lemmy Kilmister, and Lemmy von Motörhead) is an English singer and bass guitarist, most famous for being the founding member of the heavy metal band Motörhead. His appearance, facial moles, mutton chops (sideburn-moustache combination), and gravelly voice, have made him a cult figure, known beyond the world of rock music.
In 1971, Kilmister joined the space rock band, Hawkwind, who were based in Ladbroke Grove, London but was fired after being arrested at Canadian customs on possession charges; he spent five days in prison. Kilmister went on to form a new band with guitarist Larry Wallis (former member of the Pink Fairies, Steve Took's Shagrat and UFO) and drummer Lucas Fox. This new band was originally called Bastard but later changed the band's name to Motörhead at the urging of his manager.
Soon after, both Wallis and Fox were replaced with guitarist "Fast" Eddie Clarke and drummer Phil "Philthy Animal" Taylor, and with this line-up the band began to achieve success. The band's sound appealed to both Lemmy's original heavy metal fans, as well as to fans of the nascent punk rock scene. In fact, Lemmy asserts that he generally feels more kinship with punks than with heavy metal; he even played with the The Damned for a handful of gigs when they had no regular bassist — and Lemmy's guttural vocals were unique in the world of rock at that time. The band's success peaked between 1980 and 1981 with a number of UK chart hits, including the classic single "Ace of Spades" (still a crowd favourite today) and the #1 live album No Sleep 'til Hammersmith. Motörhead have since gone on to become one of the most influential bands in the heavy metal music genre, and although Lemmy is the only constant member, are still performing and releasing records to this day. Despite Motörhead's many member changes over their 30 year history, the current lineup of Lemmy, Phil Campbell and Mikkey Dee has remained constant since 1995.
Lemmy has also worked with a number of other musicians over his career, and occasionally guests with Hawkwind. He has made a number of appearances in film and television, including the 1990 science fiction film Hardware and the 1987 comedy Eat the Rich (read more...)