Mott The Hoople Under Review

Mott The Hoople

If ever there was a 70s band that is under appreciated, it’s Mott the Hoople. Though their fans are legendarily supportive, Mott really has never gotten the credit they deserve next to their contemporaries. Fortunately, the Mott The Hoople Under Review DVD attempts to address this slight by presenting a loving, complimentary history of this hard working English band via a fair and light critical analysis of the band’s albums and live shows.

This 90 minute DVD is chockfull of information, most of it coming from the mouths of the band's famous fans like Mick Jones of The Clash, who’s interviewed along with many others in ‘The Mott Lot’, as well as studio engineers and producers who worked with the band, and the occasional video snippet from the one of the band members themselves — interviews not made for this DVD but taken from other sources. Much of the DVD features so-called “experts” discussing each Mott album and subsequent tours, the band’s unusual devotion to their fans, and consistent demystification of their position in the rock and roll hierarchy. In one sequence, one fan/expert talks about sharing a drink with Mott at a local pub, and then being invited to hang at the venue hours before the band was to perform. There are some really tasty live performances too, taken from maybe two or three different shows, which were precious too few. When I see these gems I have to wonder, why isn’t anybody grabbing all this live footage and releasing it!?

Extras include Kris Need, ‘The Mott Lot’ fan club president, expounding on famous Mott fans, Mott keyboardist Morgan Fisher’s ‘Mott In America’ footage taking you through some personal recollections, and ‘The Hardest Mott The Hoople Interactive Digital Quiz In The World Ever,’ an actual game that serves as a bit of padding, but is still fun. Mott The Hoople Under Review may not be the last word about Mott the Hoople (if you want that you have to read Ian Hunter’s book, Diary Of A Rock 'n' Roll Star, or just listen to their records) but it is a full, well-reasoned 90-minute romp through the history of this very influential, sometimes disparaged, often raucous, but never boring English rock band.

~ Ralph Greco, Jr.

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