Tuesday, April 16, 2024

MOTÖRHEAD – Another Perfect Day

1983 was a strange year in the rock world, Ian Gillan was the vocalist in Black Sabbath following Ronnie James Dio’s departure, Rush were embracing synths and changing their sound .. and ‘Fast’ Eddie Clarke left Motörhead. Eddie was replaced by Brian Robertson, late of Thin Lizzy, and this new line-up of Motorhead recorded the album, Another Perfect Day. The album is now being reissued as a two-disc CD to commemorate its 40th anniversary, with seven bonus tracks following the album, which includes the ‘B’ sides of singles taken from the album, plus a disc containing a previously unreleased gig at Hall City Hall, in June 1983. This was taken from the ‘Another Perfect Tour’ and features Robertson on guitar, so your view of this gig will probably be tempered by whether you believe he was the right fit for the band. [The second disc wasn’t included in the review package so no comment can be made.]

Another Perfect Day is possibly one of the more controversial albums in the Motörhead back catalogue as Lemmy had stated the band were looking to present a ‘more musical approach’ to the new album, with less of Clarke’s guitar shredding and power riffing, instead, there was Robertson’s multi-overdubbed layers of sound. Many ‘head fans were distraught by this unlikely pairing, and ultimately ‘musical differences’ between Lemmy and Robertson meant this lineup only ever released one album. Robertson’s refusal to play certain songs in the back catalogue didn’t help his case either, as neither man was prepared to compromise as to what they wanted. But Motörhead is Lemmy’s band so guess who came out on top?

But, despite it all, what of the album itself? If this was the first Motörhead album you’d ever heard, you might be tempted into thinking they’re a band straight out of the clumsily titled New Wave Of British Heavy Metal rather than the band who’d released the classic ‘live’ album No Sleep Till Hammersmith two years previously. The opening track ‘Back At The Funny Farm,’ points towards a band that’s more melodically guitar-based, rather than a band being driven by ‘fast’ Eddie’s power playing, though Lemmy’s vocals soon reassure the listener it’s still Motörhead. Tracks like ‘Shine’ and ‘Dancing On Your Grave’ lean more towards Lizzy’s sound than Motörhead’s. I was inclined to think if Lemmy’s vocals were removed from the album and you just listened to the music, you could be listening to a band like Saxon, which is no bad thing. Brian Robertson’s extended passages and playing solos on the slightly slower track ‘One Track Mind’ while Lemmy sings is an indicator of this.

This isn’t to say it’s a bad album, though. Far from it, tracks like ‘Tales of Glory,’ ‘Rock It’ and ‘Marching Off To War’ are right out of the Motörhead mould, and ‘Die You Bastard’ is the most Motörhead title ever! So I’d conclude Another Perfect Day is quite a good album though not a great one. They released several better albums once Phil Campbell took up guitar duties, and they reverted back to what they knew, loved and did better than most.

Laurence Todd
Laurence Todd
Took early retirement after many years as a teacher in order to write books as well as about music. A long-time music obsessive, has wide and eclectic tastes but particularly likes prog rock and rock in general. Enjoys going to gigs and discovering new acts.

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1983 was a strange year in the rock world, Ian Gillan was the vocalist in Black Sabbath following Ronnie James Dio’s departure, Rush were embracing synths and changing their sound .. and ‘Fast’ Eddie Clarke left Motörhead. Eddie was replaced by Brian Robertson, late...MOTÖRHEAD - Another Perfect Day