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Heavy Metal Goes To The Dogs

Hackney Wick Stadium

London .

July 25th 1982.

Motorhead, Saxon, Angelwitch, , Spider, T34, Lightning Raiders, Sleek.


   Motorhead and Saxon were pretty big at the time and were in the midst of their ' Iron Fist ' tour , the rest of the bill, was comprised of a number of bands who had supported the band at Wrexham , as well as a few other additions . Gone were Welsh rockers Budgie , who had been replaced by Angelwitch. Sleek were apparently an all Girl rock band.

    Just why Motorhead chose to play at Greryhound Stadiums is unknown, as they are hardly known for their great acoustic qualities. Perhaps the fact that they were large and perhaps were to be had on the cheap had something to do with the choice of venue. For those of you who are confused as you know of Hackney as a speedway track, the venue also doubled as a speedway as well .

t was demolished in 2003 .


Saxon .

Photos of Saxon at Hackney © Graham Horne






25.Jul.1982 Hackney, U.K.
Speedway Stadium 1 CD
63 min.
AUD 6+


It was poorly attended; possibly only a few thousand. The event had Hells Angels as security which made for an intimidating atmosphere; all the bands struggled to raise the enthusiasm of the crowd that day.

Sleek came on stage with the lead singer announcing: "we want to f*ck you all!". Class. We went mainly to see Anglewitch but they pulled out of the show.
Spider played a good set of Quo like material, but I think Saxon were the best band of the day. I remember my friends and I tore our tickets up into small pieces so that we could throw it in the air when the band came on. I remember Biff cracking a ironic remark about the crowd's seemingly lacking disappointment at the announcement of their last song of the set.

Motorhead came on stage with Brian Robertson, the rather 'surprising' replacement for guitarist 'Fast' Eddie Clarke, seemingly out of sorts dressed in white 'jogging' shorts - hardly a fitting image for the band. The other problem was the sound; it was way too quiet. Not the best open air festival I have been to.

Karl Burbage

remember this!

The Hells Angels provided security and they actually organised the whole event (Lemmy talks about this in his bio)

 Angelwitch dropped out and were replaced by More...

 Saxon were the best band of the day for me, followed by Spider, who surprised me by being really good...

 Motorhead weren’t firing on all cylinders unfortunately, I’d left their set early so I cou8ld get back home to the other side of London

 Not the best festival but oh to be 16 again J

 All the best

Russell Garrett


Thanks as ever for a brilliant site. I still refer to it regularly.

With regard to this particular gig, being the first opportunity for a London audience to check out Motorhead's new line-up with Brian Robertson, and only their second gig on British soil after Wrexham, it should've had an air of excitement, but instead was shrouded in a pall of disappointment. 

The gig could perhaps be seen as sounding the death knell for NWOBHM: the writing was surely on the wall when Angel Witch - a band that would turn up for the opening of a packet of crisps - pulled out. Their place was taken by More: a terrific band at the start of '81, with an Atlantic deal and a great debut album in Warhead, they'd been riven by internal bickering and this show featured their new, reduced and ultimately shortlived, line up with only two original members. 

Similarly, Lighting Raiders, armed with an Island Records deal (and Sandy from the Pink Fairies!), had stormed Reading a year earlier. Their already-recorded debut album had failed to show, though, and a high profile support tour with Rose Tattoo had been cancelled. The band I was most looking forward to, this now-rare gig revealed an absence of crucial founder-member Little John Hodge.

On top of that, Robbo chose to perform in the decidedly un-metal but nontheless now legendary "hot-pants and ballet shoes" ensemble (How come I've never seen any photos - have they been suppressed?). In spite of all this, at 16 I still enjoyed the gig as much as any other. It didn't rain (I don't think), and although it was under-attended, I don't remember it being embarrassingly empty - and the best thing, no queues for the bar or bogs!!


Gerry Ranson

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