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With a career now spanning four, fast-and-furious decades and counting, England’s Motorhead aren’t just the forefathers of all varieties of speed metal, but undoubtedly among the most influential and revered heavy metal bands of all time — just don’t call them “heavy metal” to their faces. Motorhead’s long story is essentially the story of its leader, vocalist and bassist Ian ‘Lemmy’ Kilmister — except that Lemmy’s story is even longer, as he put in time as Jimi Hendrix’s roadie and a member of bands like the Rockin’ Vic-ars and space rockers Hawkwind long before even founding Motorhead in 1975. Then, for three long years, Kilmister struggled to keep Motorhead alive, but after having their first album rejected and re-recording it for another label in 1977, the band finally caught fire in 1979. That year, Lemmy, guitarist ‘Fast’ Eddie Clark and drummer Philthy ‘Animal’ Taylor delivered a pair of speed metal benchmarks in ‘Overkill’ and ‘Bomber,’ and then followed them with two of heavy music’s most essential albums in 1980’s ‘Ace of Spades’ and ’81’s ‘No Sleep ’til Hammersmith’ (which went to No. 1 in the U.K.). Clarke left Motorhead after ’82’s ‘Iron Fist’ and Taylor followed after ’83’s ‘Another Perfect Day’ (featuring Thin Lizzy guitarist Brian Robertson), but Lemmy expanded the band to a quartet with guitarists Michael ‘Wurzel’ Burston and Phil Campbell, plus former Saxon drummer Pete Gill, for 1984’s double career retrospective, ‘No Remorse,’ featuring an iconic new single named ‘Killed by Death.’ Taylor returned after 1986’s ‘Orgasmatron’ but left again in ’92 and was soon followed by Wurzel, thus returning Motorhead to its classic, power trio formation built around Lemmy, Campbell and former King Diamond drummer Mikkey Dee. From this point forward, Motorhead remained an ever dependa-ble recording and touring proposition, year in and year out: always respected for their blue-collar work ethic and colossal influence, while remaining firmly (and frustratingly) entrenched in the heavy metal underground. But in 2005, the band was awarded their first Grammy, and in 2010 Lemmy was celebrated by a feature-length, star-studded documentary that deservingly elevated both his and his band’s mainstream profile. And, though he had long before swapped dingy London for sunny Los Angeles, Lemmy remained the embodiment of the drinking, drugging, skirt-chasing rocker until health issues finally forced him to retire some bad habits in 2013. All the while, Lemmy insists on categorizing Motorhead, not as heavy metal, but as just another rock and roll band, yet, whatever they are, they are still, for the moment, indestructible.

Selected Discography: ‘Overkill’ (1979), ‘Ace of Spades’ (1980), ‘No Sleep ’til Hammersmith’ (1981), ‘No Remorse’ (1984), ’Orgasmatron’ (1986), ‘1916’ (1991), ‘Aftershock’ (2013) Related Artists: Ian ‘Lemmy’ Kilmister, ‘Fast’ Eddie Clarke, Philthy ‘Animal’ Taylor, Hawkwind Further Reading: 10 Best Motorhead Songs; You Think You Know Motorhead? Read More: Motorhead News

Ozzy Osbourne, Judas Priest + Motorhead to Play 2015 ‘Monsters Tour’ Date in Brazil

Ozzy Osbourne / Rob Halford / Lemmy Kilmister
Anthony Harvey / Ethan Miller / Jason Kempin, Getty Images

Ozzy Osbourne, Judas Priest and Motorhead have been confirmed to play the first 'Monsters Tour' date in Porto Alegre, Brazil this coming April.

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Motorhead’s Phil Campbell on Lemmy’s Health: ‘He’s Fine, He’s Good As Gold Now’


Motorhead have a big 2015 ahead of them now that Lemmy Kilmister is healthy again.

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Filed Under: , Category: Metal, News

Motorhead, Slipknot, Mastodon Anthrax + Tenacious D Earn Grammy Nominations for Best Metal Performance

Motorhead Slipknot Mastodon
Frazer Harrison / Daniel Boczarski / Jason Davis, Loudwire

The nominees for the 57th annual Grammy Awards were announced Friday, with Anthrax, Mastodon, Motorhead, Slipknot and Tenacious D earning metal nods.

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Filed Under: , , , , Category: Metal, News, Rock

Motorhead’s Phil Campbell Launches Children’s Musical Project ‘Panda Party’

Phil Campbell Panda Party

Motorhead guitarist Phil Campbell has just unleashed a brutal new children's project, Panda Party!

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Filed Under: , Category: Metal, News, Rock, Videos

Motorhead Reunite With Classic Members For Surprise Performance of ‘Ace of Spades’

Motorhead's Lemmy Kilmister
Daniel Boczarski, Getty Images

During Motorhead's Nov. 6 performance in Birmingham, England, the band invited former drummer Phil Taylor and guitarist 'Fast' Eddie Clarke back onto the stage.

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Filed Under: Category: Concerts, Metal, News, Rock, Videos

Motorhead’s Lemmy Kilmister Discusses Being ‘Close to Death’ During Health Struggle

Lemmy Kilmister
Jo Hale, Getty Images

Though Lemmy has made some positive steps forward, the man called "God" by fans reveals he was "close to death" during his last surgery.

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Filed Under: , Category: Metal, News, Rock

Lemmy Kilmister Talks Motorboat 2014 Cruise, Plans for New Motorhead Album + More

Motorhead (4)

Motorboat 2014 is one experience to remember, and following the boat ride we had the chance to talk to the legendary Lemmy Kilmister.

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You Think You Know Motorhead?

You Think You Know Motorhead

You think you know Motorhead? Check out this video and dig a little deeper into the band's history.

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Motorboat Day 4: Metal Allegiance, Motorhead, Anthrax, High on Fire + More Close Out Cruise

Metal Allegiance (12)

Motorhead’s Motorboat Cruise was one boat ride that both metal fans and bands will never forget!

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20 Facts You Probably Didn’t Know About Motorhead

Lemmy Motorhead
Jo Hale, Getty Images

Check out a number of cool and obscure facts that most fans probably don't know about Motorhead.

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Filed Under: Category: Lists, Original Features

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