Mott le Hoople, Barrowland, Glasgow ****
“One for the to-do list, I’ve always wanted to play this goof,” he drawled. The Mott point guard turns 80 this year, but from a distance he looks no different than he did during his 70s pump.
The current tour reunites him with Ariel Bender (guitar) and Morgan Fisher (keyboards), who played in one of Mott’s last line-ups before Hunter parted ways for a solo career in 1975.
Bender (not his real name) is quite the showman, the fiery yin to Hunter’s terse yang. Dressed in a beret, vest with nothing underneath and a pair of skintight striped strides, he looked like a mischievous and aggressive French clown as he growled, threw shapes and riffed like the hard rock virtuoso that it is.
Hunter, meanwhile, let loose with that uniquely English Dylan yawn on thinking man glam classics such as The Golden Age of Rock and Roll and Roll Away the Stone, one of the best singles of its time. and, as Hunter reminded us, far greater success than their most famous song, All the Young Dudes, a gift from David Bowie.
Mott dealt with nostalgia and self-mythology even in their heyday. Now that they are older men looking back on their careers, their music has gained an extra layer of emotion and power. – Paul Whitelaw