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Wembley Arena, London
Saturday 8th November 2014
Photos by Stephanie Woolley

steve goldby


"Reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated."
Mark Twain 1897

England won the World Cup at Wembley, Henry Cooper put Cassius Clay on his ass at Wembley and George Best and Bobby Charlton won the European Cup at Wembley but all of that pales into insignificance compared to what happened at Wembley on Saturday.

On Saturday night at Wembley Arena, aka the SSE Arena, a man took the stage after having recently poked the Grim Reaper in the eye and spat in the Devil's face. He'd probably been sent back as he was just far too rock n' roll for Hell.

Article continues below...

After some very worrying and well documented health difficulties this past couple of years and an appearance at Hyde Park in the summer where the spirit was more than ready to kick ass but the body didn't have its bootlaces tied, there were some in attendance who were there to pay homage at what they thought may be Motörhead's last ever gig in England.

Well this is a band who have consistently defied the odds since their formation 39 years ago and England's perennial underdog are doing precisely that all over again and doing it better than anyone else ever could.

They are Motörhead and they don't just play rock n' roll, they have practically become rock n' roll by transcending even their own personas. They are so much more than a hard rock band. They are iconic and legendary and somehow even those words don't quite seem to do them justice.


"Not bad for a bunch of geriatrics!" said Captain Sensible at the end of The Damned's supporting set and he was right, it wasn't bad at all. It was pretty damn(ed) good actually and here we have another example of a legendary band who are still doing the business.

The Damned surprised quite a few people on Saturday night. Dave Vanian belied his 58-years; in fact he's even better for it, becoming more Lugosi-esque with each passing chapter and tonight he was simply resplendent.

Youthful vigour was the name of the game here alongside a superb guitar performance from Captain Sensible. No stupid 'Happy Talk' bullshit here - just straight ahead punk n' roll, Damned style and it was great to see and great to hear and long may it continue.


"They proved me right, they proved me wrong, but they could never last this long."
Ian Fraser Kilmister 1979

But back to Motörhead; in fact, we'll probably always go back to Motörhead because there is simply no other band like them and nor will there ever be.

There will be countless lesser copies in the coming decades but what we saw on Saturday night was the real deal. In classical terms, nobody has ever emulated Beethoven or Mozart and in rock n' roll terms, you can put Motörhead in that very same bracket.


Tonight's set list contained surprises. The first six songs were from the first four albums and opening with 'Shoot You In The Back' turned out to be a great decision. It worked well, and then some.

There was just one song from latest album 'Aftershock', 'Lost Woman Blues', and nothing from the 'Bastards' and 'Hammered' albums but this was a superb set list with every song a winner and the whole thing blending together seamlessly.

Mikkey and Phil played extended intros before a few of the numbers and provided solos which all allowed Lemmy to take a breather here and there without diminishing the show or performance. I hope he had a cheeky JD and line of speed during these short intervals.


"But that's the way I like it baby, I don't wanna live forever..."
Ian Fraser Kilmister 1980

Phil has been in the band for thirty years now and of the countless times I have seen him play, tonight was the absolute best, no two ways about it. He appears to have hit a new dimension and reached new levels of precision.

Mikkey has been a member for twenty-one years now and once again, I have never seen him perform as well as he did at Wembley. He made it all look so effortless.

And the main man himself put to bed any stories about him being on his last legs. This was nothing like the end. It was more like a new beginning and the next chapter of Motörhead, beginning with next year's 40th anniversary celebrations, promises much and if there's one band you can always count on to deliver, it is Motörhead.


This was nothing short of a complete and absolute triumph; a more than memorable performance that will be spoken about for a long time to come by those in attendance.

Long live rock n' roll, long live Lemmy, long live Motörhead. Still moving like a parallelogram...


Shoot You In The Back
Damage Case
Stay Clean
Over The Top
Guitar Solo
The Chase Is Better Than The Catch
Rock It
No Class
Lost Woman Blues
Doctor Rock (with drum solo)
Just 'Cos You Got The Power
Going To Brazil
Killed By Death
Ace Of Spades

Upcoming tour dates, more to be added...

11/10/14 MÜNCHEN Zenith Germany
11/14/14 HAMBURG Sporthalle Hamburg Germany
11/16/14 BERLIN Max-Schmeling-Halle Germany
11/18/14 Paris The Zenith France
11/20/14 AB Zwolle IJsselhallen Netherlands
06/05/15 TBD Rock Im Park Germany
06/07/15 TBD Rock Am Rhein Germany
06/14/15 Nickelsdorf Novarock Austria
07/06/15 Warsaw Torwar Arena Poland
07/17/15 Viveiro Resurrection Festival Spain



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Steve's Heavy Metal Chronicles index page...



Wacken Winter Nights 2018 takes place between February 23rd and 25th 2018 and the great news is that you can now experience a full-on, top class German Metal Festival easily and affordably.

It only takes an hour to fly to Hamburg from London and we've had longer journeys than that within the capital and they were certainly more expensive than the £33 air ticket that just appeared in our 'flights to Wacken Winter Nights' search.


Wacken Winter Nights is organised by the same team who are responsible for the world's greatest Metal festival, Wacken-Open-Air and the 2018 bill includes Skyclad, Orphaned Land, Elvenking, Finntroll, Grave Digger, Aeverium, Comes Vagantes, Coppelius, Corvus Corax, Die Pressgëng, Elvellon, Heimataerde, Hell-O-Matic, Ignis Fatuu, Ingrimm, Irdorath, Johnny Deathshadow, Krayenzeit, Letzte Instanz, Mr Hurley und die Pulveraffen, Pampatut, Pat Razket, Schandmaul, Sündenrausch, The Aberlour's, The Moon And The Nightspirit, Torfrock, Visions Of Atlantis, Vroudenspil, Wind Rose and more.

Besides this rich billing of superb Metal bands, there is so much more to see in the festival area including the medieval market and also the walking acts and jugglers you will meet at the theme worlds, including Robert Blake, three-time World Cup winner of street magic.

Wacken Winter Nights is something not to be missed and you can check out the amazing ticket and accommodation prices right here.

We just priced up the whole four day trip with hotels, flights, shuttles and festival tickets for less than £300 and we don't think you will get a better value festival than that, anywhere.


MetalTalk recently sat down with Wacken founder and owner Thomas Jensen and that interview will be online next week and it's a fascinating insight into how Wacken originated from nothing to become the world's premiere Heavy Metal event.


Wacken 2018 takes place from 2nd to 4th August 20218 and as with Wacken Winter Nights, if you have never experienced all it has to offer, then you owe it to yourself to remedy that.

Already announced for Wacken 2018 are Judas Priest, Nightwish, Running Wild (exclusive), Arch Enemy, Dirkschneider, Doro (Special Anniversary Show), In Extremo, Sepultura, Amorphis, Amaranthe, Firewind, W.A.R., Belphegor, Mantar, Knorkator, Deserted Fear, Watain, Night Demon, Epica, Knorkator, Belphegor, Firewind, Deserted Fear and many more and we'll have more Wacken 2018 announcements during December.

As well as being the greatest Heavy Metal festival in the world, it is without a doubt the Mecca of Metal and the one thing that every single person who loves our music should have on their bucket list.

For 2018, MetalTalk have joined forces with Wacken-Open-Air to help you get to Wacken easily and inexpensively and you can peruse the ticket and travel options right here.

If you are interested in going to Wacken 2018 and have questions, please fill out the form below and we will contact you with answers to all your enquiries. You are under no obligation whatsoever by filling this form out. We won't add you to any mailing lists or send you loads of spam - all we will do is help you get to Wacken as easily and inexpensively as possible.



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