Phil Campbell And The Bastard Sons – “Phil Campbell And The Bastard Sons” EP (Motörhead Music)
With Motörhead disbanding immediately after Lemmy’s death, Mikkey Dee wasted no time in leaving for Thin Lizzy before accepting an offer to join the Scorpions in September this year. Things with Phil Campbell on the other hand, have been less in the limelight. Joining Lemmy in 1984 as part of a twin guitar line up along with Würzel, Campbell’s involvement had started much earlier when, aged 12 years old, he met the Motörhead frontman backstage at a Hawkwind gig in 1973. Things would change forever after that, with Campbell forming NWOBHM band Persian Risk in 1979, also famed for having Tygers Of Pan Tang vocalist Jon Deverill, before auditioning for Motörhead. With some 16 albums under his (bullet) belt and co writing credits to songs like ‘Orgasmatron’, Campbell’s contributions to the material as well as the sound of the band, with more emphasis on blues and rock n roll in recent years, has been undisputed. As such, this EP comes as no surprise. Released on Motörhead’s own label, mixed by Motörhead’s producer Cameron Webb, just check out the searing ‘No Turning Back’ with its hammering double bass drumming, shredding guitars and anthemic riffs and you’ll know that the spirit of Lemmy is still very much alive here! Enlisting his 3 sons Todd (guitar), Dane (drums) and Tyla (bass) along with vocalist Neil Starr (Dopamine and Attack! Attack!), the idea arose when booking a band for one of his son’s birthday partys, only to instead step up and play as the band themselves!! This back to basics style is very much evident on this EP, with no frills or selling out or capitalizing on the Motörhead legacy, but instead putting out energetic hard rock n roll, very much evident on the opener ‘Big Mouth’ with its wild guitars and chugging back line, while on the hard rock blues of ‘Spider’ Starr shows his worth proving that clean, soulful vocals have their place alongside those sexy guitars and that hard rhythm. With ‘Take Aim’ taking us back to the days of pure beefy British biker rock with its revved up guitars complemented by the catchy chorus, this 5 tracker taster ends with the acoustic rock of ‘Life In Space’. Thankfully this EP isn’t some bad acid trip, but rather the Phil Campbell riff machine going into overdrive once again!