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Not every band can claim they’ve left a vast legacy that spans genres and decades. And not every band can make that claim while still being very much alive and kicking. Motörhead, however, can make this claim. Motörhead will tell you themselves that they are a mere rock and roll band. But everyone else will say that they’ve pushed too many boundaries to be just that. This rock and roll band is the definition of living legend, and has helped burn a path for metal, punk, and all the genres in between.

Motörhead and Heavy Metal

It’s no surprise that heavy metal bands kneel at the altar of Motörhead. They’re louder, faster, and more aggressive than anything else that sprung out of the 70s. Even Black Sabbath and Ozzy recognize this. Motörhead’s distinctive logo, Snaggletooth, is one of best metal logos, and the umlat over the second “o” in the band’s name has been copied (although Motörhead wasn’t the first to use it, they are the most recognized). Bands from all subgenres, including the darkest of death metal and lightest of the 80s glam metallers, all can trace some influence back to Motörhead.

Motörhead and Punk

The punk rock spirit resonates with Motörhead far more than that of heavy metal. Lemmy once said that the music of Motörhead had much more in common with The Damned than Judas Priest. Either way, once the punk energy and spirit met the metal of Motörhead, speed metal and thrash metal were formed – two genres that are still wildly popular around the world. It’s not hard to conceive why Lemmy has such a fondness for punk – like most punks, he is an individualist that blazes his own trail without much caring what other people think. And he spent many creatively abundant years in the 70s on the same level and stage as British punk bands.

Motörhead in Media

Motörhead has made the rounds on TV, in video games, and in film. In the early 80s, you could find Motörhead on British sitcom “The Young Ones.”

More recently you could find Lemmy on a sketch comedy show or making a cameo in film or in a Foo Fighters video. The band’s songs have been used a lot in the world of pro-wrestling (no surprise there, theatrical sports and Motörhead seem like a perfect pairing). That’s a lot of exposure for a band that doesn’t even need it. There’s a famous scene in 1994’s Airheads (you know, the movie that set Steve Buscemi up for numerous cameos in Adam Sandler films) where Brendan Fraser’s metalhead character asks a scheming Harold Ramis, “Who’d win in a wrestling match, Lemmy or God?” The answer to that trick question: “Lemmy IS God.”

That about sums up the reason why Motörhead is so appealing, no matter where you see or hear them. If Lemmy wanted to, he could have a Kardasian-like empire – but his humble home on the Sunset Strip and constant touring seems to be enough for the legend.

Motörhead, Still Going Strong

This year alone, Motörhead will visit several countries and host their 2nd-annual cruise, the Motörhead Motörboat. That shows a lot of staying power for a band that was born in the 70s!