People reacted to the death earlier this year of Lemmy Kilmister, the iconic front man of Motörhead, in different ways.
Some took to social media to pay tribute to the British hellraiser, some blared “Ace of Spades” for the afternoon, others headed to the liquor cabinet and raised a shot of Jack Daniels for Lemmy and the spirit of raw rock and roll.
Jason Healey, aka Jase of Spades, decided to take on a more committed approach in honouring the great man. 366 Days of Motörhead, is Jase’s tribute to Lemmy where he has vowed to listen to nothing but Motörhead for 366 days. That's a whole year of blasting all things Lemmy and Motörhead. Even, “Don't Let Daddy Kiss Me”.
A long time fan of what he describes as “hideous guitar music”, Jase is documenting the experience on 366 Days of Motörhead, a website where he writes playlists and commentary on the band's lengthy discography.
Jase is a good writer and the celebration of Lemmy’s music, and large and colourful life comes through observations such as "While not underrated, it’s wholly reasonable to believe that there isn’t enough worship for "Mean Machine”" and "Orgasmatron bonus track "On The Road" is an undercooked/proto version of "Built For Speed". Enough to give you mild food poisoning, well shy of certain death."
The challenge even comes with it’s own set of rules such as politely requesting that only Motörhead be played when Jase is vising a friends place house and Rule 3. “If I encounter music that is outside my control (in a shop, or the office Xmas playlist for example) I must attempt to imagine a Motörhead equivalent and focus on that.”
We caught up with Jase to find out how things have been going.
NOISEY: Why are you doing this?
Jase of Spades: The short answer is the “I’m So Bad” video The rush that every Motörhead fan feels is captured here.The more involved answer is that simply saying Motörhead is enough to communicate power, that infallible rush. I also wondered what the psychological impact would be. Would I long for other bands and records I loved? Would I grow to loathe this band I’d afforded this ivory tower status, or were these songs as immortal as I’d long believed? In a sense, I’m sacrificing the liberty to switch between records/bands as I desire - one of the few things in our integrated lives that goes virtually unchallenged.
Where were you when you heard of Lemmy’s death?
I was driving. A friend posted it on Facebook and my wife saw it. No matter how inevitable someone’s death may be, the actualisation always commands your attention. My social media feeds were completely absorbed with his passing. I’ve never seen that degree of homage and tribute for anyone who has died. Jeff Hanneman, even David Bowie’s tributes, paled in comparison. I’ve been a Slayer fanatic for a long time, and Slayer fans are rabid; yet there was no comparison. What’s even more amazing is that the fervour feels almost as potent now, as it did at the end of December. I’m not alone in perpetuating Lemmy’s legacy it seems.
You’ve split the four decades of Motörhead across the four quarters of the year. Do you have a favourite era?
It has to be 75-84. 85- 94 was also magical, and a close contender for the throne, but if you were to examine it closely, the songs that the band were most renowned are almost exclusively represented in the band’s first decade.
Have you found yourself listening to a lot bootlegs, live recordings, You Tube clips etc?
It’s limitless what is available online. I recently found the very first Motörhead live show. It’s a little whooshy, but you can capture the vibe and understand what they had from the opening salvo. Set closed with “Waiting For the Man” by The Velvet Underground - unexpected and amazing. I love watching interviews with the band members too. I have a great admiration for Lemmy’s ability to speak plainly. So comfortable in his own skin.
The focus has for the most part been on the more “known” albums - I don’t go too far off the grid for the most part. Considering Motörhead had over 10 official live albums, 22 studio albums, even when omitting On Parole, I’m certainly not left wanting.
Are there any Motörhead songs that you find more difficult to listen to?
There’s the occasional threat of burnout, but I’ve only veered close to this a couple of times. "Ace Of Spades" is on everything, if one is going to get you, that would be it.
How has following the set of rules been going?
Ha well I don’t get out too much, and my closest friends are of course, Motörhead fans. What I need to work on is managing the expectations of my two sons. They vacillate between love and hate over this crusade, but hearing a three, and a six-year-old walking through the house singing “Ace Of Spades” is a parent’s dream realised. My turntable is content to be seeing one artist exclusively.