Mott The Hoople - '74
Hall 1
The Sage


There are few concerts that I've been more eagerly looking forward to than this one. I've been a fan for�forever and was knocked out with the 2013 reunion show I saw in Newcastle. 2013 featured most of the original cast, focussing on the Island releases. My favourite MtH era, although I did quite enjoy the last studio album and thoroughly adore the live album.

Sadly (very sadly), no Overend nor Buffin. Instead, Ian has brought with him the sizeable talent that is the Rant Band by way of a foundation on which Ian, Morgan and Ariel can perform.

It's heartwarming to see such a great turnout at The Sage, very nearly sold out, right up to the top tier, and from the look of us all there must be some very empty local care homes this evening.

It's equally heartwarming to, once again, be aided and abetted by Boro Bri.

The show starts promptly with some archive Bowie narrative talking about Mott followed by the traditional Jupiter with which to herald the band's entrance.

Deliberately, I'd gratefully taken but not listened to the currently circulating torrents from this tour (thank you, all). I'd hoped - almost expected - to hear those thick, rich Gibson tones kicking in when the gig started "proper", akin to those on the live album so, was a initially a little underwhelmed at Ariel's relatively thin sound from his strat. MC Bosch, Les Paul to hand, was right down in the mix.

However, it's always a treat to see Ian Hunter and even more of a treat to hear a Mott set. I got soon got accustomed to the sound &, it's fair to say, enjoyed the show. There were quite a few really interesting moments, and one or two great ones, songs I'd forgotten about, with Ian & the crew are still able to give us the flavour of what this band were all about. Creative rock�with a twist.

My main gripe is with Ariel. He spends too much time acting the clown. He's no Overend. He's just not really funny. And his playing is�not what it was, shall we say. To me, this seemed like a huge opportunity for him and Morgan to get a bit of interest and momentum back in their career. Morgan still plays really well (although I can do without him having a manservant bringing him champagne in a luminous ice bucket, hanging up his jacket for him & the likes�). Ariel's playing is, as one learned Mott aficionado opined to me recently, shoddy.

So, I suppose I've come away a little disappointed, inasmuch as it was a good show but should have been a GREAT show. Given the circs, there's limited scope for further Mott reunions, although Ian does still keep the Mott candle burning with the Rant Band.

Just my take on proceedings. The band were gloriously well received and, despite my niggles, I'm so glad I went and would do so again.

Anyway, see what you think�

All of the Boys played:

01 Bowie-Jupiter
02 American Pie-The Golden Age of Rock 'N' Roll
03 Lounge Lizard
04 Alice
05 Honaloochie Boogie
06 Rest in Peace
07 I Wish I Was Your Mother
08 Pearl 'n' Roy (England)
09 Sucker
10 Sweet Jane
11 Rose
12 Walking With a Mountain
13 Roll Away the Stone
14 Marionette
15 Medley
16 Encore Break
17 All the Way From Memphis
18 Saturday Gigs
19 All the Young Dudes

Mott The Hoople '74:
Ian Hunter - vocals, guitar
Ariel Bender - guitar
Morgan Fisher - keyboards

Rant Band:
James Mastro - guitar, sax, mandolin
Steve Holley - drums
Mark Bosch - guitar
Paul Page - bass
Dennis Dibrizzi - keyboards

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