on 25 June 2011
Wow! Anybody who still thinks that Ace Of Spades was Motorhead's greatest achievement need to check this album out! The album still does what all their best albums do - loud, dirty rock n roll but this time everything has been pumped up right in your face. It sounds as though, for the first time in a long time, the 'Head have let some modern influences in on their sound. Be it thrash metal on 'Burner' or the Alice In Chains tune-down rifforama of 'Liar' and even closer 'Devils' whose venomous energy spirals magnificently as it closes the the album is great. Even the 12 bar blues songs - here represented by single 'Born To Raise Hell' and 'Bad Woman' seem to have somehow had a facelift to make them sound cutting edge. This is one of those magical albums where you go "What the f@%k was THAT??!!" Before playing it again and again. Motorhead proved they are still as deadly and relevant as ever, especially when you look at the musical landscape of the time - Metallica had gone soft and the World was waiting The Next Big Thing to come along after grunge had followed Cobain to the grave. Motorhead really could and should have stepped up and claimed it but alas, they once again failed again to make headway. Still, with the band currently doing well and finding their niche on the live circuit as legends everything worked out OK in the end! One of my favourite rock albums of all time, go buy it!
on 18 April 2008
`Bastards' is Mikkey Dee's first and Würzel's last proper Motörhead album, so that's the nominal line up changes out of the way, so now for the important stuff. What exactly did Phil and Lemmy have for breakfast during the recording? Respectfully, Cider and Jack Daniels. Erm yeah. Anyway, `Bastards' is another brilliantly monikered album, somewhat of a lost classic for the band, not because the fans have forgotten it or the band just the standard record company bullpoo. Honestly, Motörhead should have been bigger than Metallica (mainly due to more quality songs, musicianship and live performances) but they had a insanely high amount of record company and managerial bullpoo to deal with instead, just typical!
`Bastards' is an album of two half's, I know all albums have two sides but this has somewhat of a clear divide in terms of musical direction. The A side is frighteningly good, the first 5 songs are just balls to the wall, be that balls to the wall speed metal or rock 'n' roll, its achingly heavy (barring the ballad `Don't Let Daddy Kiss Me' which is tender but I could be a prat and argue that lyrically it's still heavy). The second side still rocks but displays the bands more experimental side, and although less successful than the frankly stellar A side, its still rather good. The AC/DC of erm rock 'n' roll? (I was going to say metal but that's not strictly the case)...hardly. `Liar' displays a new sort of groove for the band, all mid tempo and angry! `Lost in the Ozone' is a power ballad (two ballads on a Motöralbum? It'll be MTV unplugged next!). `I'm the Man' is a weird sort of bluesy grunge that doesn't actually work, but it's the only one on the album, so we can overlook that. Oh crikey it's all experimental! But doth it rock? Aye, indeed.
Individual life affirming, hell raising and rocking tracks include. `On Your Feet Or On Your Knees' (which isn't about oral sex don't worry!) which is a riff onslaught with a nice foot stomping pace, a definite underrated Motörhead classic on a underrated Motörhead classic...bizarre that! `Burner' along with `Sacrifice' is as close to thrash metal as the band got. It's short, sharp and prickly (much like a hedgehog) with some eerie wahed guitar from Phil and one of his most unique solos. The lyrics here are particularly harrowing `I don't think you know your future yet...' well Mystic Meg does.
`Death or Glory' is the customary war themed song that has Lemmy indulging in one of his favourite past times, military history (well he's not saving the Nazi memorabilia for a rainy day or the second coming of the forth Reich). It features Würzel and Phil at their most ferocious and insane; frantic (not the Metallica song!) riff work ahoy, and Mikkey shows he's not been hired just for his uncanny resemblance to Joey from Friends. `I Am the Sword' again has some brilliant spidery riffs and Lemmy's most disturbing and vicious vocals ever. `Born to Raise Hell' again continues the theme of having loads of great songs all stuck together (which isn't actually a theme, but it feels like one). Now, if you don't like rock 'n' roll you won't like this, but this begs a bigger question...what the sweet baby Jesus were you listening to Motörhead for if you didn't like rock 'n' roll!? Did you want jazz? Eleven finger tapping? "Proto-speed-thrash-metal?"...I despair of you and if this album wasn't so good I'd take your life and mine! Anyway, `We Bring the Shake' is the best of the more experimental numbers here. It's quite reminiscent of Hawkwind, which is no bad thing. The verses have an ethereal droning quality to them which would fit just perfectly on `Space Ritual' and the chorus well rocks...I feel I need more adjectives to describe rocking. So all in all an excellent bunch of tightly crafted songs.
Production and performance wise, this is the band displaying their most aggressive tendencies which were somewhat lacking on `March or Die' (although that album is nowhere near the abomination others have made it out to be). The guitar sound is immense and everything's definitely in the red. Mikkey, as the new boy has something to prove and he does it in style. The drums on the album are killer especially in contrast to the drab and straight sounding Tommy Aldridge (who is good for Ozzy and Whitesnake but not Motorhead). Lyrically, Lemmy combines his typical rock 'n' roller themes with a more grizzly outlook on humanity and he does it with the class and flair of a man who's done it all, well by it all I mean your mum and sister (hell, he chatted up my mum when she was fourteen too...and that's all she disclosed, Jailbait?). Würzel and Phil deliver the goods once again on guitar, with some memorable moments.
`Bastards' is another masterpiece from the band who won't or more likely can't die. Ignore the negative review, the band and fans alike recognise `Bastards' as one of the bands finest and it's the best to feature Mikkey so far. Just another great album from an Englishman, Welshman, Scarecrow and a Swede.
on 6 June 2009
'Bastards' was Motorhead's first release after the disappointing major label effort 'March or Die' and its title is significant: Bastards was Lemmy's original choice for the band's name, and it's easy to see this album not just as a return to form but as a reboot of the entire Motorhead project. Also significant is that Wurzel was drifting away at the time; his contribution to 'Bastards' is minimal, leaving the band as a three-piece again, finally.
They never put a foot wrong here. The first few tracks are as clinical and eloquent an expression of Lemmy's philosophy as you're ever likely to hear; midway through there is some surprisingly emotional and personal material in 'Don't Let Daddy Kiss Me,' 'Liar' and 'Lost in the Ozone'; and 'Bastards' closes with two stone-cold classics, 'We Bring the Shame' (possibly my favourite Motorhead song) and 'Devils'. These last two are peppered with psychedelic touches that seem to bring Lemmy full circle back to Hawkwind while losing none of the Motorhead crunch.
Everyone is on great form here -- Lemmy's never sung better and even reels off a bass solo, guitar solos are imaginative and never gratuitous, even the more routine tracks like 'Born to Raise Hell' and 'I'm the Man' are fizzing with energy and every performance is as tight and hard as can be.
'Overkill' will always loom large in the Motorhead catalogue and in the history of hard rock generally. But pick up that, 'Bastards' and 'Inferno' -- three albums spanning three decades -- and I think you've got the very best of Motorhead.
on 21 June 2013
Not really a Motorhead aficionado but really enjoyed this. Really heavy, fast in places, slower and more melancholy in others (Lemmy displaying a surprisingly tender - brutal subject matter aside - on "Don't Let Daddy Kiss Me" which is never mawkish or awkward) or the excellent "Lost in the Ozone". Highlights for me include "I'm Your Man" and "Liar". You don't buy a Motorhead album for the soaring vocals or harmonies, you buy it because you want to turbocharge your ears. Great stuff.
on 27 December 2008
The album is as good as the title, the cover and the t-shirt design. Buy it, read it, look at it and wear it, another Motorhead classic.
Motorhead were not getting on with their record label at the time, and this cd ended up only getting a very limited release. I am not sure if it really did only get released in Germany, but that's where I got my copy. I think it is one of their best, and shows a nice variety of songs. Born to Raise Hell is an all-time classsic, as is On Your Feet or On Your Knees. I think this equals 1916 as their finest recording as a four-piece.
on 15 January 2016
This albums Rocks ! It's as simple as that.
I have loved this band since I first saw them in 1980. If you have some how managed to miss hearing this then rectify immediately and buy...if you are a Motörheadbanger you will not regret it. One of my top 3 all time head albums. I am not going to review this beast track by track as it is a monster of an album....production is brilliant, songs kick arse, band at the top of their game. If I lost my copy I would buy again that same day....indispensable ! TRY BEFORE YOU DIE !!!! Before you know where you are you will be running all around the room being sick in all the ashtrays !!!!!!
on 9 November 2013
Everyone has heard of Motorhead. Most can recognise Ace of Spades within a few bars. Lemmy is a legend. We know all this. But what some don't know is that the album 'Bastards' is one of their best; indeed one of rock music's best albums.
Released very quietly at the time (as I remember), Bastards came out and not with much fanfare or rumour. And that in itself is a travesty. This album goes beyond mere hard 'n fast rock 'n roll and metal. It manages to capture most of the rock spectrum and does so with amazing grace and ease. I disagree with reviews that say this track didnt work or that track doesnt fit. They ALL fit on this album expertly. 'I am the sword' is the no-nonsense kickin ass hard rock foot-tapper, with 'Burner' and 'On your feet or on your knees' being faster again, in case you need it. The album has a slow tempo chilling warning message in the form of 'Dont let daddy kiss me' and there are awesome reflective tracks such as 'Lost in the ozone'. Finishing this album of is the track 'Devils'. Masterpiece in itself right there. For me, if there was ever a Motorhead song that was moving, it's Devils. Who would have thought? ALbum is solid throughout. Go and buy it. I've been playing it for twenty years now.
on 19 June 2012
I was a fan of Motorhead from the start; Fast Eddie, Philthy Animal and Lemmy. After that line up I kind of lost interest....until now. This album is a return to what I recognise as a true motorhead album. Sure there has been some great and classic work by the boyz post start out, but to me nothing to match the early years. Bastards links the present with the past in a pounding assault of greatness. Buy it, kick back, crank it up and enjoy!