Live At Brixton '87


Sanctuary, 2005

REVIEW BY: Christopher Thelen


For a band that never got the respect they deserved when they were together, it's amazing how many “unofficial” live albums were released “on behalf of” Motörhead.

Case in point: Live At Brixton '87, which originally came out in 1994 (as Live At Brixton), and was grudgingly approved for release by Lemmy when Sanctuary re-released it in 2005. Taking the tapes that should have been the basis for the my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 No Sleep At All album, Lemmy and crew bash through mostly a collection of songs from their then most current two albums, sadly eschewing a good portion of their past in the process. Add into the mix a congested sound, and you're left with a barely passable disc.

Whichever version you listen to, you're going to be hit with a very muddy sound overall – which takes away from the overall vibe of the show. Also, while Lemmy and crew were always known to be built for speed (yeah, I know, you saw what I did there), it sometimes feels like the versions being played at this show are more amped up than usual – which proves to be a distraction this time around.

Of the 12 songs featured in this show, a whopping three are pre-1983. Everything else is culled from either Orgasmatron or Rock 'N' Roll (with “Just 'Cos You Got The Power” being the b-side to one single from the latter). While I love the Orgasmatron album, it would have been nice to have heard a little more variety from this particular lineup. (In all fairness, No Sleep At All only had four older songs.)

All in all, the biggest crime that Live At Brixton '87 commits is just being an average Motörhead show. There really isn't anything which sucks the listener in and keeps them locked in from opening bass salvo to the finale of howling feedback (which, ironically, is absent on this disc). It's just a show: take it or leave it.

Live At Brixton '87 is not to be confused with the 2003 release Live At Brixton Academy, and is a disc which is recommended solely for Motörhead completists (or anyone who loved the late '80s lineup marking the return to the fold of “Philthy Animal” Taylor). You shouldn't listen to a Motörhead show and wonder what the big deal was about them. Sadly, this is the question you may ask when listening to this disc.

Rating: C

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