Ace of Spades [DVD]


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Ace of Spades [DVD] Review

by Bret Adams

Motörhead is a truly original and influential band, and this fact is slowly but surely sinking in deeper within the music world. This British group, led by the legendary, incomparable vocalist/bassist Lemmy, invented speed metal and predated punk by nearly two years. Over its 30-year history, with Lemmy's feral growl front and center, no other band has been as widely respected by both metalheads and punks as Motörhead. In 2004, Eagle Vision's Classic Albums documentary series honored Motörhead's 1980 landmark Ace of Spades. This album featured the classic lineup of Lemmy, guitarist "Fast" Eddie Clarke, and drummer Phil "Philthy Animal" Taylor. All three provide recollections in new, often hilarious interviews. To be accurate, the Ace of Spades DVD expands into more of a general documentary about Motörhead and its early days than just strictly the making of the album. Although the process of recording Ace of Spades with producer Vic Maile is discussed, Motörhead's raw, immediate style doesn't lend itself to detailed in-the-studio dissection as much as, say, Classic Albums' look at Pink Floyd's The Dark Side of the Moon. The interviews address a variety of subjects, including touring (and the subsequent fighting and miscellaneous debauchery), Lemmy's stint as a member of the space rock band Hawkwind, and Motörhead testimonials from Metallica's Lars Ulrich and Guns N' Roses and Velvet Revolver's Slash. Most people would probably judge a book by its cover and assume Lemmy is not as smart and witty as he really is. His funny give-and-take with Taylor during their joint interview is one of the highlights. A generous supply of DVD bonuses includes new performances of "(We Are) The Road Crew" and "The Chase Is Better Than the Catch" (with Lemmy and Taylor in one studio and Clarke visually "beamed in" from another).