Alas, when a CD release carries the title The Definitive Mott the Hoople
, it's patently obvious it's not. This set of dodgy origins, issued by Candelight in the U. K. is, in essence, a compilation of tracks taken from bootlegs. Right. Those who already have All the Way from Stockholm to Philadelphia: Live 71/72
and Live at Two Miles from Heaven have all of this material, so read no further. For those who don't and want to hear the Mott the Hoople
at their ragged glory best in a live setting with Mick Ralphs
or Ariel Bender
in the lead guitar chair, this baby is for you. Yes, quality is spotty in places, but everything is hearable and sounds reasonably good. The performances, however, are wildly inspired, raucous, and burning hot. Check the 90 mph version of "Walking with a Mountain," that could have been done by the Clash
a decade later, or the completely regal "All the Young Dudes," or the insanely menacing "One of the Boys." The material may not be definitive, but it is dynamite from top to bottom. Variable sound quality and all. For the fan who doesn't have it all, or the punter wondering what all the hoopla is about (bad pun intended), this is for you.