Mott The Hoople and Ian Hunter

Ian Hunter CD: "Defiance Part 1"

Sleeve and track listing

Sun Records SUN8069 5047806928(5 stars!)

  1. Defiance
  2. Bed of Roses
  3. No Hard Feelings
  4. Pavlov's Dog
  5. Don't Tread On Me
  6. Guernica
  7. I Hate Hate
  8. Angel
  9. Kiss n' Make Up
  10. This Is What I'm Here For
  11. I Hate Hate (alternate version)1

1 'Hidden' track at the end of track 10


It's been seven years since the last one, but Ian's new (2023) album has been worth the wait. What with being struck down with tinnitus and then confined to his basement by lockdowns this could have been a difficult album to make. But the list of musicians who came out of the woodwork and contributed is astonishing. This could have been problematic with egos getting in the way, but executive producer Andy York ensured this never happened. The presence of the likes of Slash, Jeff Beck and Taylor Hawkins shouldn't be a reason to buy anyway with Ian delivering an album that is up there with his very best.

The album opens in glorious style with the (near) title track, as hard-rocking as anything Ian has recorded for many years. Ian doing things his way and not giving in to current trends, noting "Got an 'F' for squanderin' those golden years". Now that's defiance!

I Hate Hate is a great message in our troubled times (Ian says it's one of the best lyrics he's written) and the message "Wouldn't it be great if we ran out of hate" better than anything our leaders can offer. The main version is piano-led, while the bonus track is guitar-led.

Ian always includes a song for Trudi (his wife of 50 years) and Angel is as good as any he's written. He notes "It's hard to kiss an angel... the harps are always getting in the way"

The album closes in glorious style with Ian proclaiming "This is what I'm here for!" and noting "I ain't through - when I'm through I'll notify you". Defiance indeed, and as essential as ever.