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Ian Hunter - Rant

Review: 024
Date: 15 May 01

 


Rating: 5 Stars

Musicians:
Mickey Curry – Drums
Tommy Mandel – Loops, Keyboards
John Conte – Bass
Rich Pagano – Bongos
Steve Holley – Percussion
James Mastro – Six-String Fuzz Bass
Doug Petty – Organ
Andy York – Guitar, Electric Piano, Groovebox, Background Vocals
Ian Hunter – Vocals, Acoustic Guitar
Rick Tedesco, Robbie Alter, Jesse Patterson, Lisa Ronson, Willie Nile, Ian Hunter – Gang Vocal

Tracks Listing:
1. Still Love Rock And Roll
2. Wash Us Away
3. Death Of A Nation
4. Morons
5. Purgatory
6. American Spy
7. Dead Man Walkin’
8. Good Samaritan
9. Soap ‘N’ Water
10. Ripoff
11. Knees Of My Heart
12. No One

 


It’s always a happy thing when one of your favorite artists returns from a lengthy absence. (Ian Hunter’s last album was the slightly patchy “Artful Dodger” in 1996) What’s even happier in when he comes storming back with the sort of record that makes you realize why you held him in such high esteem in the first place. “Rant” is such an album.

It’s a triumphant return for Hunter, full of irresistibly catchy tunes and storming pop - rock.

When Mott the Hoople released their first album in 1969 (with a youthful Ian Hunter as chief song writer, singer and piano player) their songs were all about girls, love, and living on the streets. There’s no big change here except the songs are indebted to thirty odd years experience of the highs and lows of life. Opening song “Still Love Rock ‘n’ Roll”, says it all really, Hunters sings about his love for his profession, backed by a rock steady dance beat, barrel house piano, and some simply superb lead guitar from Andy York (borrowed from John Couger Mellencamp’s band) This song Mott is sure will soon become the anthem for any “Tahitian Queen” Friday Happy Hour. But the quality of songs doesn’t drop off after this, every one’s a gem, and with much more of a cutting edge than recent outings, both lyrically and musically. Hunter has surrounded himself with some of his best mates, who fortunately are all extremely talented musicians. Long time cohort Tommy (Moondog) Mandel should get a special mention for his atmospheric keyboards on the wonderful “Death of a Nation”.

“Morons” with its Mott the Hoople “Marrionette” era sound is an undisguised swipe at the despised management of the record industry, “Morons don’t matter at all. No education, No information. Morons, are ugly and small. They lower the tone. Get rid of them all”.

On the other side of the coin is Hunters Rant to his wife of thirty years, the beautiful Trudi, “Knees Of My Heart” a realistic look backwards at what makes a good marriage work. 

“Ripoff” is a well deserved uncontrolled rage against the hypocrisy of the British Government, and Hunters well stated reasons for moving to live in America. 
The crisp production by Andy York and Ian Hunter himself still allows, the beat to take you seamlessly from one song to the next, and what with a marvelous packaging job by Hunters new America record label “Fuel 2000” what more could you possibly want.

Ian Hunter maybe in his sixties now, but his heart still pumps Rock ‘n’ Roll.

These songs are going to kill live, the driving building riff of songs like “Good Samaritan” are just going to be monsters once Hunter gets them on the stage. If you only buy one rock album in 2001, make sure it’s “Rant” by “Ian Hunter”.

 

Pawed by Mott The Dog
Remastered by Ella Crew

E-mail: review@mott-the-dog.com


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