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Classic of the Week

Motorhead, "Orgasmatron" (1986), Sinclair

March 03, 1994|JON MATSUMOTO

When Motorhead first revved up its cacophonous engine back in the mid-'70s, many critics chided the group for its exceptionally brutish delivery and sound.

Nearly two decades later--now that Motorhead has influenced a plethora of speed and thrash demons, from Overkill to Slayer--it is clear that the heaviest of the British metal bands actually was a pioneering outfit, years ahead of its time.

The last great Motorhead album, "Orgasmatron" ranks with "Ace of Spades" and "Bomber" as one of the scuzzy unit's most intensely satisfying. Chock full of humongous guitar riffs and throbbing, fat-bottomed rhythms, this is work designed for the most incorrigible headbanger; fans who favor such pop-metal acts as Poison need not apply for membership in the relatively small but loyal Motorhead army. Still, like the best of the band's albums, "Orgasmatron" offers hooks aplenty. You definitely can sing yourself hoarse to such big-time rockers as "Deaf Forever" and "Built for Speed," or revel in the meaty guitar figures found in "Claw."

As always, the thundering music here is defined in large part by vocalist-bassist Lemmy Kilminster's guttural growl. Lemmy has the type of menacing vocal style that can send small children and animals scurrying for cover. He's the perfect vehicle for the macho bluster found in tracks like "Mean Machine." Play this one loud.

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