“With the 1980 release of Ace of Spades, Motörhead had their anthem of anthems – that is, the title track – the one trademark song that would summarize everything that made this early incarnation of the band so legendary, a song that would be blasted by legions of metalheads for generations on end. It’s a legendary song, for sure, all two minutes and 49 bracing seconds of it.” JB
“The album, and particularly its title track have been considered amongst the most influential in the development of thrash metal.” WK The album “has become a significantly influential hard rock classic” WK and has been “described as ‘one of the best metal albums by any band, ever.’” WK Actually, “Ace of Spades was Motörhead’s third great album in a row, following…Overkill and Bomber…Those two albums have a lot in common with Ace of Spaces. The classic lineup – Lemmy (bass and vocals), ‘Fast’ Eddie Clarke (guitar), and ‘Philthy Animal’ Taylor (drums) – is still in place and sounding as alive and crazed as ever. The album is still rock-solid, boasting several superlative standouts.” JB
“Actually, besides the especially high number of standouts on Ace of Spades…the only key difference between this 1980 album and its two 1979 predecessors is the producer, in this case Vic Maile” JB in “the first of what would be a series of projects with Maile.” WK To the listener, “the result of his work isn’t all that different from that of Jimmy Miller, the longtime Rolling Stones producer who had worked on Overkill and Bomber, but it’s enough to give Ace of Spades a feeling distinct from its two very similar-sounding predecessors.” JB
However, “the band commented at the time about finding the right producer. Whereas the band had previously had an input at the mixing stage, Maile took sole responsibility here, Clarke explaining that the result was that ‘you can finally hear everything that's going on.’ Of the performances, Lemmy claimed that ‘Vic got me singing instead of just shouting all the time,’ while Taylor added ‘and he got me playing more solid.’” WK
“This singular sound (still loud and in your face, rest assured), along with the exceptionally strong songwriting and the legendary stature of the title track, makes Ace of Spades the ideal Motörhead album if one were to choose one and only one studio album. It’s highly debatable whether Ace of Spades is tops over the breakthrough Overkill, as the latter is more landmark…and is somewhat rougher around the edges, too. Either way, Ace of Spades rightly deserves its legacy as a classic. There's no debating that.” JB
Click on box above to check out the DMDB on Facebook.
Last updated March 28, 2011.