PC 32871 The Hoople
Produced by Ian Hunter, Dale Griffin and Overend Watts
Released on March 1974
UK CHART POSITION #11 . . . US CHART POSITION #28
Find it at GEMM
PC 32871 cover
[high resolution photo]
 

T he mid seventies provided a velvet goldmine of overlooked bedtime stories: Diamond Dogs, A Soap Opera and, here, The Hoople. Glam’s flair for the dramatic was a natural fit for “staged” works, the quotes indicating that many of these albums were intended to be staged in the listener’s mind. And what are “Marionette,” “Alice” and “Through The Looking Glass” if not vignettes to some loosely scripted musical? The real wonder of The Hoople is the depth of the material; I’m still discovering things in “Marionette” that I missed the first time round. Some of the wordplay is bolan for trouble (“Pearl atta girl, high school hooker / Money funny honey, cook book looker”), but mostly it’s inspired. All nearly all of it, save the stellar “Born Late 58,” comes courtesy of Ian Hunter’s coconut. He was a budding Richard O’Brien, this one, and not afraid to use those dark shades to reflect on the rock star within. It’s that ability to play roles, to simultaneously step inside a character and step outside to observe him, that makes The Hoople (and Ziggy’s children) so compelling. The fact that some of the melodies are instantly memorable (“Roll Away The Stone,” “Trudi’s Song”) is so much gravy. It’s not a flawless record (neither was A Soap Opera or Schoolboys In Disgrace), but fans of glam storytellers (The Kinks, David Bowie, Lou Reed) will embrace it warts and all. Unfortunately, I don’t own the earlier Mott albums (yet), so I can’t compare this to Mott or Dudes (and I understand that those records may be beyond compare). The Hoople is the last studio record with Hunter, so venture past here at your own risk.

PC 32871 back cover PC 32871 lyric sleeve
PC 32871 back cover PC 32871 lyric sleeve

TRACK LISTING

  1. THE GOLDEN AGE OF ROCK 'N' ROLL    3:28
  2. MARIONETTE    5:03
  3. ALICE    5:16
  4. CRASH STREET KIDDS    4:25
  5. BORN LATE 58    (Overend Watts)    3:58
  6. TRUDI'S SONG    4:25
  7. PEARL 'N' ROY (ENGLAND)    4:25
  8. THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS    4:34
  9. ROLL AWAY THE STONE    3:08

    All songs written & arranged by Ian Hunter unless noted.

CREDITS

ARIEL BENDER -- lead guitar, vocals, sliding guitar
MORGAN FISHER -- keyboards, synthesizer, piano, organ
DALE GRIFFIN -- drums
IAN HUNTER -- vocals, rhythm guitar, piano
OVEREND WATTS -- bass, vocals, "Leslie" bass, lead vocal (5), Rickenbacker 12-string guitar, rhythm guitar, Manfred Mann's bass guitar
Howie Casey -- tenor saxophone, "Rehperbahn" sax
Lynsey De Paul -- fairy dust, chat sequence
Mike Hurwitz -- cello
Jock McPherson -- tenor and baritone saxophone
Graham Preskitt -- violin and orchestration, tubular bell
Mick Ralphs -- picket line chorus, rhythm guitar
Barry St. John, Sue and Sunny -- backing vocals
Thunderthighs -- backing vocals
Stan Tippins -- our man half-way up somewhere, "Cosh and Helmet" saloon bar scene
Tppin's Toilet Trio -- handclaps
Blue Weaver (and "Boot") -- "Cosh and Helmet" saloon bar scene
Mike Dunne with Paul Hardiman -- engineer
Bill Price with Sean Milligan, Gary Edwards and Peter Swettenham -- remix and dubbing engineer
Alan "Madswitcher" Harris -- here, there and everywhere, engineer (9)
Dan Loggins -- production supervisor, Alan Freed
Roslav Szaybo -- sleeve concept and design
John Brown -- photography
Kari-Ann -- model

return to MOTT THE HOOPLE discography

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
UK March 1974 CBS LP/8T S69062/4269062 lyric insert
US 1974 Columbia LP PC 32871 lyric sleeve
JPN   CBS/Sony LP SPOM-121 lyric insert
US   Columbia CD CK 32871  
JPN 1996 Sony CD SRCS-9021  
JPN   Sony CDX SRCS-9823 w. bonus track

Did you know...

"At the time (Luther Grosvenor) joined Mott The Hoople, he was still signed to Island Records as a solo artist. So he had to have a pseudonym. We had a German television date and a British girl singer/songwriter named Lynsey de Paul came up with the name Ariel Bender. We thought, 'What a great name for a guitarist!' When Luther came along we said he became Ariel Bender." -- Dale "Buffin" Griffin. (Source: KAOS2000 Magazine interview.)

 

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