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Motorhead/Clutch/Valient Thorr, 3/1/11, House of Blues, Boston

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Band Photo: Motorhead (?)

I’ve seen literally hundreds of shows in my life and for the past decade or so, there’s been one band on my concert bucket list that I somehow had never managed to see: Motorhead.

That all ended when Lemmy, Phil Campbell and Mikkey Dee invaded Boston this week and it would be the understatement of a lifetime to say it was more than worth the wait.

These three have been playing together since 1985 and to call them “tight” is like saying Sydney Crosby is a good ice skater. They play as one and their raw chemistry defies words.

When Lemmy emerged onto the dimly-lit House of Blues stage in his trademark black cowboy hat and offered: “We are Motorhead and we play rock ‘n roll,” he wasn’t screwing around. The guy is all business and is easily one of the most captivating, intense and all-around entertaining frontmen in the history of rock.

Ageless is another term that comes to mind. Lemmy and company sounded every bit the same fiery band they were in their heyday. Their encore of “Overkill” was as eardrum-splittingly loud and perfectly slamming as can be heard on the vintage 1978 record “Live at the Roundhouse” (which is a killer live bootleg if you don’t have it).

The classics – “Stay Clean,” “Killed by Death” and of course, “Ace of Spades” – sounded as precise and furiously potent as ever. New songs "Get Back in Line" and "I Know How to Die" had dark vigor and showcased Lemmy’s trademarked blues-metal growl and fuzz bass assault. Campbell and Dee, as they’ve done for three decades, rounded out the barely-restrained chaos, straddling the fine line between boozy, reckless bar band and high-octane power trio.

Openers Clutch and Valient Thorr held up their ends of the deal and proudly displayed the influence of Lemmy and company.

Valient Thorr frontman Valient Himself, shirtless and in skinny jeans, led the North Carolina-bred road warriors through a tight, six-song set of punk-infused heavy metal highlighted by “Heatseeker” and the scorching “Infinite Lives.” He and his mates certainly did Motorhead proud and by the end of their set had the venue’s packed crowd of bikers and old school headbangers fist-pumping along.

Maryland’s Clutch kept things grooving with an hour of the sludgy grind the band has been perfecting for nearly two decades. The quirky punk edge of “Texan Book of the Dead” took on an even darker vibe in the setting while “Profits of Doom” and “Pure Rock Fury” lived up to their self-descriptive titles.

Both acts had the crowd brimming with anticipation by the time Lemmy arrived for his primal sonic attack.

It was surely a spectacle to behold and I’m thanking the metal gods I was finally able to be there to witness it in all its majesty.

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23 Comments on "Boston Feels Motorhead's Fury"

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Anonymous Reader
1. R Tenney writes:

Aah yes Drifski. Good review. Motorhead always deliver! Lem @ the boys pulverize the senses and damage eardrums. It aint pretty but what a wonderful racket it is! Tuesdays show was probably my 10 or 11th Motorhead show. First saw them at the channel in mid 80s. Can never get sick of them doing Ace of Spades live. No Iron Fist though:boo: only complaint. Clutch were super tight also. Good to see they brought out dude from Tree for a song. I miss the legendary Tree as well as Sam Black Church @ Scissorfight.Aah the old days! Anyways awesome show and well worth the 30 bucks!

# Mar 3, 2011 @ 7:33 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
brandedcfh420's avatar

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2. brandedcfh420 writes:

RT....I have only heard the song Pesticide from TREE, and cannot find any of their music anyhwere!! We seem to know some obscure bands!!

On topic, CANT FKN WAIT FOR SATURDAY NIGHT! AFTER 21 YEARS THE MIGHTY MOTORHEAD WILL DESTROY MY SENSES AND DROWN ME IN THE CHAOS THAT IS MOTORHEAD!!

# Mar 3, 2011 @ 7:45 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
3. R Tenney writes:

Yeah Branded the mighty Tree flew under the radar everywhere but New England! They once turned down a contract from Geffen. Geffen wanted to turn them into a Rage against the Machine. Certain Trees stuff is all out of print now. And Motorhead: your in for a great show bud. Wear ear plugs 4 Motorhead! Volume is insane! Clutch was the tightest I've ever seen em. NP\ Tree : Surf AIDS

# Mar 3, 2011 @ 8:06 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
OlafBerzerker's avatar

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4. OlafBerzerker writes:

not a bad way to spend an evening, almost made me feel like i was there with you drift.

# Mar 3, 2011 @ 8:51 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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5. brandedcfh420 writes:

RT: where can i locate some good TREE music?! and thanks for the earplug advice!!

# Mar 3, 2011 @ 9:15 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
6. R Tenney writes:

@Branded. Check out plant a tree.com or I think Amazon can help. The labels they released stuff on are no longer in businesses anything you can get your hands on is well worth it! Every now @ then they have reunion shows usually in support of the herb. They'd be worshipped now. They just came out in the wrong decade that catered to grunge and nu metal. NP: Tree ; Excommunicated

# Mar 3, 2011 @ 9:40 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
7. R Tenney writes:

Hard to believe Branded but Tree opened for Clutch on Their Pure Rock Fury tour. U should be able to down load Tree stuff off of TreeMusic.Com. Check out :Downsizing The American Dream :album still a favorite of mine 15 years later. NP: Tree : Paper

# Mar 3, 2011 @ 11:35 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
silvermountains's avatar

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8. silvermountains writes:

I wish this show would stop in Colorado, shame. Looks like I'll just see em next time, Plus Clutch was boring to watch at BLS. Aw well, next time gents.

# Mar 4, 2011 @ 12:26 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
NW_MetalHead's avatar

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9. NW_MetalHead writes:

I saw this show when it came to Seattle and it was fvkcin awesome! It was my first time seeing Motorhead and they did not disappoint at all. And those rumors of how loud they are were point on. It was definitely the loudest show I have ever heard. Clutch was amazing as well. It was kind of nice that they didn't play any of their "popular" tunes, just songs that actual fans of the band would know. I had never really listened to Valient Thorr before but I fell in love with them after the show. WHen lead singer Valient Himself jumped in the crowd, made everyone sit down and pretend to row a boat, it was one of the most hilarious/awesome things I have ever seen at a show. Bottom line, GO SEE THIS SHOW!!!!!!

# Mar 4, 2011 @ 3:55 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
10. R Tenney writes:

Yea V Thorr was pretty damn good too ! Sorta a punkish old AC:DC Definitely high energy reminded me of Zeke or early Nashville p***y

# Mar 4, 2011 @ 4:47 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
11. lemmy11 writes:

the showed kicked ass.my neck still hurts.lemmy is god.

# Mar 4, 2011 @ 8:45 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
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12. Rychemn writes:

I too Drift saw motorhead later in life....2009 in Orlando, at the house of blues....the bouncers told us, they had to take their equipment off the stage....and let MH use their own...I knew right than and there, they were gonna be "Louder than Everything Else".....for those who never seen these true pioneers of metal...I highly recommend going to at least one show in your lifetime...you won't regret it!!!!

N.P.....Killed by Death...Motorhead.

# Mar 4, 2011 @ 11:31 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
wilco's avatar

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13. wilco writes:

afhter all the years they still kick ass
did lemmy had hes boots on as well
will see them in june again

# Mar 4, 2011 @ 11:33 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
brandedcfh420's avatar

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14. brandedcfh420 writes:

JUST OVER 24 HOURS TO GOM FOR ME...BEEN WAITING 21 YEARS FOR THIS NIGHT!!

# Mar 4, 2011 @ 11:46 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Rychemn's avatar

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15. Rychemn writes:

Get there early Branded.....and than get to the front!!!!!

# Mar 4, 2011 @ 11:55 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
brandedcfh420's avatar

Member

16. brandedcfh420 writes:

i will not be in front of the pit. ill be front row of the back of the pit. im no young one anymore and the crush of the crowd really hurts my ribs. old pit injury that will never go away!! also, im short, so when the pit breaks i stand at the front back of it and have a great view of the stage!!!

HOWEVER, I will be arriving early, real early!! Im always one of the 1st people there (crowd wise). by doing that ive met some great bands and even got a roadie job at a BLS show (but had to leave early as i was already sick and it got me good at the show). BUT IT WORKED!! My "Need a roadie for the day" sign worked one time so far!!

# Mar 4, 2011 @ 12:33 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Driftski's avatar

Writer

17. Driftski writes:

Thx for all the comments dudes - for you Tree fans, most of their stuff is available on iTunes or try wonderdrugrecords.com. They have four Tree releases up there for purchase, including "Downsizing the American Dream" and "No Regrets, No Remorse." Both classics.

# Mar 4, 2011 @ 4:18 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Rychemn's avatar

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18. Rychemn writes:

I know where you are coming from Branded...I too am not a young man, but I talked my buddy into going to the show early and we were dead center, front row, and I can promise you I'll never do it again.....but it sure was one for the ages!!!!!

# Mar 4, 2011 @ 6:07 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
brandedcfh420's avatar

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19. brandedcfh420 writes:

@ driftski: thanks for the info!! ill be buying in the near future!!

# Mar 4, 2011 @ 6:20 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
20. R Tenney writes:

Yea Driftski; good review! Better than the one I saw in yesterday's Globe! Sorry for going off topic with the Tree love! But maybe I'm not. Underrated greats those Tree fellas are! And Branded:ear plugs. Side stage away from pit is a great spot! Your comments sir on the show would be appreciated. Driftski: more reviews please!

# Mar 4, 2011 @ 6:48 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
brandedcfh420's avatar

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21. brandedcfh420 writes:

RT: go to the forum and type in experience in the forum search. read my reviews!! def gonna have review for this show!!

# Mar 4, 2011 @ 10:10 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
brandedcfh420's avatar

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22. brandedcfh420 writes:

MY EARS ARE ALMOST DEAF TO SOUND!! FORGOT EARPLUGS!!

# Mar 6, 2011 @ 12:37 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
23. R Tenney writes:

Hey Branded : read your review ;it was on the money! Similar Clutch set to Bostons show! They were sooo tight! Wished they'd done A Lincoln from new one though! Yea Motorhead know only one way! Bludgeon u with volume! Think Lem gets kick out of destroying peeps hearing! And them Carolina dudes put on a kickass show! Hadn't heard much from them but they surprised me bigtime with the old sclool rawk! Syle! Anyways good review dude; I just can't comment because I'm not a member!

# Mar 6, 2011 @ 3:45 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address

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