Mott The Hoople LP/CD: "All The Young Dudes"

Sleeve and track listing

Sony/Rewind 491691 2. (3 stars!)

  1. Sweet Jane (4:21)
  2. Momma's Little Jewel (4:26)
  3. All The Young Dudes (3:32)
  4. Sucker (5:03)
  5. Jerkin' Crocus (4:00)
  6. One of the Boys (6:46)
  7. Soft Ground (3:17)
  8. Ready for Love/After Lights (6:47)
  9. Sea Diver (2:54)
  10. One Of The Boys (demo)1
  11. Black Scorpio (demo of Momma's Little Jewel)1
  12. Ride On The Sun (demo of Sea Diver)1
  13. One Of The Boys (UK b-side)1
  14. All The Young Dudes (Hunter/Bowie vocal)1
  15. Sucker (live)1
  16. Sweet Jane (live)1

1 denotes bonus track on the 2006 reissue

Sleeve variations

(Above) Original UK LP sleeve

Review

After Mott broke up in 1972, David Bowie, a long-time fan, felt they were too important to be allowed to die, and so offered them Suffragette City. Mott turned it down ("Not good enough"), and so Bowie offered them All The Young Dudes. Realising immediately this was it, they accepted. David offered to produce the album, and to get his management interested, and the rest is history.

This album is the result of those sessions. The songs are certainly there - half this album would remain in the live set to the end - but the problem comes with the production. Although Bowie tidied up their sound, and instilled a sense of studio discipline into their work, compared with their Island albums, I find the life and above all the energy has been throttled out of the songs.

That said, many fans still rate this album highly, partly no doubt due to the stepping stone this album became to eventual world-wide fame. Highlights of this album are the title track (natch), album opener Sweet Jane (much better IMO than Lou Reed's original), Mick Ralphs' Ready For Love (which would later be re-recorded by Bad Company) and the albums closer, Sea Diver. Interestingly, three tracks (Momma's Little Jewel, One Of The Boys and Sea Diver) had previously been recorded during Mott's Island days. Eventually surfacing on the 1980 rarities album Two Miles From Heaven, they are included here on the 2006 reissue.

Sound quality

This album has been issued several times on CD. The original (US) CD offered poor packaging and average sound. The 1998 UK CD offered excellent sound quality - so good that it felt like a whole new album. The 2006 issue offers a host of bonus tracks (all wothwhile), excellent sound quality and informative sleevenotes. However, Dale Griffin's photo seems to have been left off the back of the tray liner.

The 1998 packaging used the original UK sleeve, with the colour photos (as used on the US issue) reproduced better than on the US CD. The back-and-white photos from the original UK LP were inside the insert as well.

Warning

There is a picture CD commercially available which is also called All The Young Dudes (Digimode RM 1547). Although it is credited to "Mott The Hoople featuring Ian Hunter" and sports a nice colour picture of the band, it has no connection whatsoever to this album. Indeed, it isn't even Mott The Hoople! AVOID!

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Copyright © 1996-2017 Adrian Perkins