The embodiment of legendary speed, grit, and homemade rock 'n' roll is the most basic way to describe Lemmy Kilmister, lead singer of Motörhead. Despite some pretty monumental life decisions, Motörhead has continued to pave the way for a large number of metal and metal subgenre bands. It would be almost impossible to list all of the groups they have influenced since 1975.
Not only are they known for their ear-fucking live performances, but you are getting straight love and devotion from a band that created the concept of giving absolutely no fucks. With that being said, they are coming to Detroit, and none of that Freedom Hill crap — they're sticking to an indoor venue.
Although some word has been going around that Kilmister isn't doing so hot again, after canceling many dates due to his poor health both in Utah and now Denver (the locations' high altitude making it hard for him to breathe). I'm sure most fans are sad and sick of hearing about it. I have a feeling that Kilmister himself is sick of hearing about it too. To my knowledge the man is not even afraid of death, as he was quoted in an interview with Kerrang! saying "Death is an inevitability, isn't it? You become more aware of that when you get to my age. I don't worry about it. I'm ready for it. When I go, I want to go doing what I do best. If I died tomorrow, I couldn't complain. It's been good."
The man continues to do what he loves and works really, really hard at it. He has a classic blue-collar mentality with an English/L.A. coating he wears proudly, and which is hard not to admire. Most people find it difficult not to assume when bands with many notches under their belt come into town that it might kinda suck, but at least you witnessed it kind of thing. But I feel a little different about this one — it's something like paying respect to your elders and receiving a sound bath of crunchy gravel aggressively thrown at your brain. That would make anyone want to take a swig of something stiff and rage.
The Motörhead sound is timeless and unrepeatable; Kilmister even changed the way "Run Run Rudolph" sounds to me (so raunchy). Although the risk of the show not happening is rising by the day, I feel that any music enthusiast who doesn't mind a little noise should venture out for a night of deep-rooted raw rock.
Not only is Motörhead going to be damaging your ear holes, but Anthrax and Saxon are included on the bill, bringing a different sound of thrash to the table. Motörhead with a more classic rock, hard rock, and a little glam on speed sound, mixed with Anthrax rap rock thrown on top of basement punk with a loud guitar racket. A seasoned band themselves, it's almost an adorable match. The Anthrax boys have been vocal about their utmost "we're not worthy" admiration for Motörhead in general, and Kilmister in particular. Anthrax's Scott Ian has gushed about the man many times, saying "It was like someone transplanted a pirate from 500 years ago and stuck him in the modern age. That was the sound he makes. I couldn't describe the impact he had on me and his influence." Be that as it may, Anthrax also continues to pave their own trail (no vehicles allowed). They always seemed good at bringing the strangest of influences together, making a watered down Black Flag/Judas Priest/Public Enemy cocktail. Saxon, on the other hand, is expected to come in representing when metal was teetering on the edge of 1980s hair metal, just far enough back in time that hard rock never left their palette.
The show is already fixing to be a great somber end-of-the-summer experience, where the leather jackets won't be too smelly and sweaty but just useful enough to cover the dog days of summer's beer and hot dog belly. See you in the pit.
Motörhead plays with Anthrax and Saxon in support of Motörhead's 40th anniversary on Saturday, Sept. 12 at the Fillmore. Starts at 7 p.m.; 2115 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-961-5451; thefillmoredetroit.com; tickets start at $29.50.