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‘I Can’t Do It': Motorhead’s Lemmy Stops Show After Two Songs

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Motorhead were forced to stop last night’s show in Austin after just two songs as frontman Lemmy Kilmister continues to battle health problems. You can see the evening’s final partial song – and the singer’s heartfelt apology to the supportive, cheering crowd – in the video above.

(Update: Motorhead have issued a statement on last night’s events, canceled tonight’s San Antonio show and suggested that future dates could be affected as well. See below for the full details.) 

The group’s two previous concerts, Aug. 27 in Salt Lake City and Aug. 28 in Denver, were cut short and canceled altogether, respectively. Each city’s high altitude presented breathing difficulties for Kilmister, whose health issues in recent years have included a June 2013 hematoma and being fitted for a defibrillator.

We were in attendance at last night’s Austin show, and can report that the evening’s activities got under way normally enough, with a well-received set from Pennsylvania stoner rockers Crobot, and then a quite commanding one from New Wave of British Heavy Metal survivors Saxon.

Unfortunately, Lemmy seemed shaky from the start, as he ambled onto the stage looking noticeably gaunt and tried to sing the first number, “Damage Case,” clearly out of breath and at half speed. Meanwhile, guitarist Phil Campbell was doing everything he could to compensate by running about and engaging the audience much more than is his habit. Drummer Mikkey Dee also seemed to be trying to will Lemmy onward with his more measured but typically powerful attack.

Alas, the situation did not improve as Motorhead struggled to complete another Overkill standard, “Stay Clean.” After greeting his fans and admitting he was still under the weather, Lemmy lasted barely one minute into their next song, “Metropolis,” before dropping his arms, backing away from his microphone, and conceding defeat in obvious disgust, as his bandmates ground to a feedback-screeching halt.

As for the crowd, many of whom were no doubt aware of the frontman’s recent health issues, they had nothing but supportive chants of “Lemmy! Lemmy! Lemmy!” — especially once Kilmister briefly returned to the microphone, leaning on his now familiar cane, and apologized yet again for his inability to carry on, leaving those assembled no choice but to turn away and start filing out.

The group’s current world tour, in support of their newly released 22nd studio album, Bad Magic, began on Aug. 19, in Riverside, Calif., and is slated to run until February. However, this morning the band announced that they will not perform tonight in San Antonio as scheduled, and will not return to the road until Lemmy is “properly rested and firing on all cylinders again.” The full statement appears below:

Lemmy’s 30 Most Historical Moments

 This Day in Rock History – September 2

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