Lemmy RIP

29 12 2015

Lemmy RIPTributes have been pouring in for recently departed local rock superstar Lemreway (Lenmy) Kontinuingminister. Born 70 years ago in South Lochs as Iain Freechurchminister (he changed his name in 2000 after the big ecclesiastical schism), Lemreway rose to fame as bass accordion player with massively influential hard rock band Mawtörhead.
Lemreway’s career began in the late 50s after seeing T*mmy D*rkie playing in the Star Inn. He played with a number of no-hope bands around the island including the Coulegreinmakers and the Mawtown Sect before achieving moderate success with the Rockin’ Seceders, a dynamic beat combo comprised of off-duty Free Presbyterian ministers. The Rockin’ Seceders toured extensively and were the first Western rock band to perform behind the Iron Curtain, when the Politburo of the Federal Socialist People’s Republic of Point invited them to play a dance in Bayble in 1965.

The Rockin’ Seceders split in 1967 in a bitter dispute over whether taking the church bus on the Sabbath was in breach of the 4th Commandment. Lemreway moved to town, where he shared a flat with Noel E*die, bass player for Jimmy Hen’s Dreich Experience. This led to jobs as a roadie for the band and as an egg packer at Jimmy Hen’s battery sheds in Tong. In 1968, Stornoway worthy Coinneach Gobha introduced Lemreway him to his cousin Psalm, a precentor in Kuala Lumpur Free Church and virtuoso tabla drummer. Psalm hired Lemreway and they went on to enjoy some success on Stornoway’s 60s psychedelic scene, mixing Eastern drumming, Gaelic precenting and thrash bass accordion in proto-world fusion outfit Psalm Gobha’s Pal. Lemreway later dossed about with other ruppish bands like Soval Butterfly and K*ntr*st before joining dyspepsia-plagued space rockers Ochwind in 1972. 

Ochwind reached their commercial peak in the early 70’s with evergreen hit about fake jewelry ‘Silver Masheer’ and a raft of successful albums including ‘Warrior on the Veg and Thyme’ and ‘Feis Ritual’. 

The rest of Ochwind were vegan cosmic hippy white settlers who insisted on a strict diet of LSD and lentils, so it was no surprise when, in 1975, Lemreway was eventually ejected from the band for “pharmaceutical differences”. En route to a gig in Rodel, Lemreway’s accordion case was opened by Hearach customs. There was fleek all LSD or lentils in it, but there was a large stash of spealtrags, amphetamines and Rennies. The fiasags in Ochwind were mightily offended that their bass player should be polluting his body with salt fish and indigestion tablets, so Lemreway was abandoned at the side of the road outside Ardvourlie.

Undeterred, Lemreway got the bus back to town, rounded up a couple of bleigeards that were hanging about the Macs and formed Mawtörhead along with guitarist Fast Eddie Cearc and drummer Philthy Phil ‘Amadan’ Whaler. Their first few studio recordings performed acceptably well, and included ‘Overkill’ a concept album about Niseachs hunting too many gugas, and ‘Bomber’, a tribute to the illustrious Rong, Murderers of Love and Dun Ringle drummer. But their biggest album chart success was a live recording of a gig on the Uig moor from 1981; “No Sleep Till Hamnaway”. 

From their formation to the present day, Mawtörhead have stood out as one of Stornoway’s premier rock bands with hits including “Peat Iron Fist” (about a particularly impressive tairsgeir that Lemreway got from Calum Steallag) and their most commercially successful offering, an ode to Lemreway’s days working on a Tawse road crew, “The Ace of Spades”. 

Lemreway’s unconventional fashion choices made him stand out from the rest of the musicians in the Stornoway music scene. Shunning the big hair and spandex favoured by the likes of B*d R*put*tion and T*sh, Lemreway favoured a wartime Mitchell’s bus uniform festooned with “Keep NATO Out” badges, huge sideburns and two lumps of marag geal that got stuck to his face in 1967 that he never bothered to wipe off. He was seldom seen without a glass of his favourite tipple, Fasinex and Coke.
The band’s hard ‘n fast sound has been deeply influential in the world of heavy mawtal, but Lemreway was always dismissive of attempts to pigeonhole the band into any of the subgenres that it spawned. ”It ain’t no fl**keen speed metal, thrash metal, death metal or danns a’ rathaid metal”, said the inveterate social security scrounger and 4-crown addict to the Newvalley Musical Express in 1985, “It’s chust fl**keen Deoch ‘n’ Dole”.

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