(144 pages, b/w, written in German)
“MOTÖRHEAD: Der Aufstieg der lautesten Band der Welt” (original title: “Motörhead: The Rise Of The Loudest Band In The World”) is an officially authorized graphic novel about the early days of Ian Fraser Kilmister, to all Rock fans better known as Lemmy of course. The creators David Calcano and Mark Irwin are both very experienced guys themselves already. Calcano is the founder and creative director of Fantoons (a Los Angeles based animation studio), who has already worked with Disney, Universal Music, Alice Cooper, Brian Wilson and the BEACH BOYS, RUSH, MR. BIG, POISON and Steve Martin. Mark Irwin is an American comic book artist with a 25+ year career, who already worked on comic heavyweights such as Spider-Man, X-Men, Justice League, Green Lantern, Batman, Superman, Star Wars and Aliens. Over the years he has also been art director for Heavy Metal Magazine, Wildstorm Consumer Products and Upper Deck, worked for Insight Comics and IDW Publishing and has written and / or edited books about the BEATLES, RUSH and David Bowie. So yes, both their backgrounds are quite impressing as well, aren’t they? But does that also mean that they could really do justice to such an iconic figure as Lemmy with a graphic novel? In my opinion they could! Based on all the mentioned sources at the end of the book, they obviously did a lot of research and did their homework very well. So, MOTÖRHEAD die hard fans will recognize a lot of important historical moments throughout the story, which – by the way – is being told by Lemmy himself. I really liked that aspect a lot, because that way it all sounds way more honest. And you don’t question what Mr. Kilmister tells you, do you? So just sit back, enjoy the ride and follow Mr. Kilmister from the days when he was still working at a riding school in the English countryside, up to the recording of MOTÖRHEAD’s most famous album “Ace Of Spades”. The drawings are in black and white (with some blue thrown in for good measure), overall very moody and they fit very well, because for a story like this, full color would probably have been too cheesy anyway. I won’t become an Irwin fan because of these drawings (in that respect I definitely have other comic book heroes), but I have to admit that they do fit this story. Sometimes I even got the impression that all this could also have been storyboard drawings for a movie of this content (which should really be made some time, if you’d ask me!). All in all it’s pretty cool to see Lemmy’s early biography come to live and to meet the members of HAWKWIND, early MOTÖRHEAD musicians Lucas Fox, Larry Wallis, Philthy “The Animal” Taylor, “Fast” Eddie Clarke, manager Doug Smith and two youngsters named Lars Ulrich and Cliff Burton, who would later become famous themselves with METALLICA. It’s a typical Rock’n’Roll story about the lack of money, sex, drugs and alcohol and the life on the road and in a recording studio. Not sure about the original version of it, but the German edition has a square format (it almost looks like a vinyl boxset), comes with a hardcover and has a cool looking cover artwork in typical MOTÖRHEAD style. So, if you’re a fan of Lemmy and especially about the early days of his career, you should definitely consider picking up a copy of it. German readers can purchase it from www.cross-cult.de directly, without additional shipping costs (it is also available as an ebook). The english written original is available from Fantoons.