Search - Ian Hunter :: Dirty Laundry

Dirty Laundry
Ian Hunter
Dirty Laundry
Genres: Alternative Rock, Folk, Pop, Rock, Classic Rock, Metal
  •  Track Listings (12) - Disc #1

2007 reissue of this album, which has been out of print for nearly a decade. This project was initiated in the summer of 1994 by keyboardist Casino Steel, formerly of the Punk band The Boys, who was planning to record an ...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Ian Hunter
Title: Dirty Laundry
Members Wishing: 1
Total Copies: 0
Label: Cherry Red UK
Original Release Date: 10/10/1995
Re-Release Date: 7/18/2007
Album Type: Import
Genres: Alternative Rock, Folk, Pop, Rock, Classic Rock, Metal
Styles: Hardcore & Punk, Singer-Songwriters, Album-Oriented Rock (AOR)
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1


Album Description
2007 reissue of this album, which has been out of print for nearly a decade. This project was initiated in the summer of 1994 by keyboardist Casino Steel, formerly of the Punk band The Boys, who was planning to record an album with some friends and invited Ian Hunter to join them in the studio. What emerged was a hard rocking affair that saw Hunter return closer to his Mott-ley musical roots than he had in recent years. The roll call of musicians involves reads like a British Punk/New Wave who's who! Specifically guitarist's Honest John Plain and Darrell Bath. Bath could list the UK Subs, Dogs D¹Amour and the Godfathers on his CV while Plain had been a Lurker and, with Steel, one of The Boys. A link with the frontman's Mott The Hoople past showed up in the shape of Blue Weaver, who took turns on keyboards with Casino Steel. Sex Pistols bass player Glen Matlock completed the cast list. This release consists of twelve songs; three are Hunter songs, four Hunter collaborations and the other five originate from the rest of the band. Cherry Red.

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CD Reviews

An All Star Rock n Roll Circus!
O. Stinger | Kawasaki, Japan | 05/13/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Nice to see such praise for this rock n roll masterpiece! I'm a bit perplexed by the negative reviews here, though. I don't think a band composed of "obscure European" musicians immediately equates to substandard music. Such an indictment notwithstanding, the music-smiths contributing to this album are far from obscure. On the contrary, on guitar and vocals we have both Honest John Plain and Darrell Bath, the duo that formed the brilliant good-time rock n roll band, The Crybabys in 1990. Plain is a founding member of the seminal punk rock band, The Boys, and Bath's exhaustive resume includes work with the UK Subs, The Vibrators, and Tempole Tudor, as well as such jewels in the crown of rock n roll as The Dogs D'Amour and The Quireboys. Darrell has since found success both as a solo artist and with his own band, Sabre Jet, has most recently performed with Dan Baird (ex-Georgia Satellites) and is also the newest member of The Chasers with Danny McCormack of the Wildhearts (Whew! Now that's what I call an impressive career!). Completing the band on Dirty Laundry are Casino Steel, also from The Boys, Glen Matlock, bassist for the Sex Pistols, and Vom, drummer from the quintessential German punk band Die Toten Hosen. So much for "obscure."
Regardless of the ensemble band, it is still a formidable task to find even a single fault with an absolute gem of an album like Dirty Laundry! I suppose if one is a Mott the Hoople/Ian Hunter traditionalist, perhaps this piece is too much of a departure from Hunter's previous work. Remember, though, that this only became an Ian Hunter album after his contribution to the project gradually increased to the point where it simply made the most sense to release it under Hunter's name. The project actually began life as Casino Steel's Gringo Starrs, and if one approaches this album out of appreciation for the work of the all star musicians showcased here, it's absolutely irresistible! I for one, arrived at Dirty Laundry following years as a die-hard fan of The Dogs D'Amour and Quireboys and Darrell Bath's work with both of those bands. Delving further resulted in the discovery of Darrell's earlier band, The Crybabys, and subsequently Dirty Laundry. And with both Bath and Plain back together again on this album, as well as Steel performing and Matt Dangerfield, yet another member of The Boys contributing to the song-writing (as does Andrew Matheson of the Hollywood Brats by the way!), Dirty Laundry rightly should be considered a The Boys/Crybabys collaboration, with Hunter the ring leader of this rock n roll circus!
As for the songs, first of all I must admit to a bias toward the ones that Darrell Bath had a hand in writing (as he holds the illustrious title of My Favorite Guitarist on the Planet Earth!), but in my opinion, the songs that truly steal the spotlight are the opening track "Dancing On The Moon," "Never Trust a Blonde" (also featured on the Sabre Jet album, but done miles better on Dirty Laundry), "Everyone's a Fool," and "Scars." The first three are straight up good time rock n roll that positively ooze swagger and groove, complete with sassy guitars and honky tonk pianos. "Scars" is superbly atmospheric, slowing the pace down to conjure up vivid images of late-night, post-party solitude, when you're struck-out and drifting slowly back to sobriety. "Invisible strings," written solo by Hunter, bears an uncanny resemblance to Rod Stewart's earliest solo work. If you didn't know better you'd swear it was a "lost " track from "Every Picture Tells a Story," or "Never A Dull Moment." Of the comparatively less satisfying tracks, I find "Another Fine Mess" A bit too pedestrian for my tastes, and the remake of "Good Girls" from the Crybabys debut album, while more up tempo and polished here, pales in comparison to the original. Still, two mediocre tracks out of 12 isn't bad at all! Hunter and friends sound like they're having a blast (which apparently actually was the case in the studio, by most reports) and the album is non-stop fun straight through. And just like the reluctant acceptance that even the greatest of parties has to end sometime, the only real somber piece is the closing track, "The Other Man," though it still manages to serve as an appropriate coda to this cornucopia of gritty, honest to goodness rock n roll.
That this record was produced and actually released in a decade that shunned true rock like an embarrassment is further testament to Hunter, Plain, Bath, and their comrades' dedication to real rock n roll, the way it was meant to be played and heard!
Incidentally, Bath and Plain also contributed songs to Hunter's follow up offering "Artful Dodger," which is, alas, harder to find than the proverbial needle in the haystack.
To anyone who enjoyed Dirty Laundry, I would highly recommend giving a listen to Plain and Bath's Crybabys (the sophomore album of which is currently only available through small independent French label, Action Records, but well worth the hassle to one's hands on!), plus Bath's work with The Dogs D'Amour on the "All Or Nothing" EP and the "More Uncharted Heights of Disgrace" CD, as well as his solo work."
Mott's Dirty Laundry
Kim Fletcher | Pattaya, Chonburi Thailand | 12/06/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This album started out as a fun venture in Abbey Road Studios when Norwegian Keyboard player and long time friend of Ian Hunter's (Ex Mott the Hoople) Casino Steel was going in to record a few numbers with some of his friends going under the name of Gringo Starr's All Stars (cheeky little name if ever I have heard one), knowing that Ian Hunter was at a loose end after just tragically losing his off sider, main collaborator, and all round good guy Mick Ronson to the dreaded cancer the previous year (1993), after completing the Mick Ronson memorial Concerts at London's Hammersmith Odeon. (The building that used to be the Hammersmith Odeon may be called many different things due to commercial reasons over the last few years, but it will always be the Hammersmith Odeon to me, and one of the finest venues ever to go and see your favorite band.) All the artists on this album in some way or another took part in this concert. The band in the studio was Casino Steel, well respected Solo artist from his Norwegian Homeland; Ian Hunter (ex Mott the Hoople); Honest Plain John of the Boys and the Crybabies; Darrell Bath of U.K Subs; Dog's D'Amour, and The Godfathers; Vom of Doctor and The Medics, surely one of the most underrated drummers of his era. The infamous Blue Weaver took turns on Keyboards with Casino Steel, and holding down the Bass guitar responsibilities was a certain Glen Matlock of Sex Pistols and Rich Kids fame. In fourteen days eighteen songs were completed, twelve of which appeared on this fine collection, three of which are Hunter songs, four of which are Hunter collaborations, and the other five are shared by the rest of the Band. Subsequently the record company asked for a name change and Gringo Starr's All-Star's was dropped for the more original and more amusing "Ian Hunter's Dirty Laundry".First song is 'Dancing on the Moon' and its title's reflecting how the Band felt being in this position, total freedom. So let's just go out and enjoy ourselves, written in the studio (which is often the best way to keeping it spontaneous), done in the studio in one take and the band didn't know what they were doing at all. After this we get another rocker in the amusing 'Another Fine Mess', with lyrics from Hunter about the old touring days of the Hunter/Ronson band.

Then showing that life is not all laughs and frivolity we get the somber 'Scars', showing that in all personnel relationships we have to get through the troughs as well as the peaks. Hunters singing of his own lyrics have never been more poignant.Of course as soon as this little ode finishes, boys will always immediately revert to being boys and we get the first non-Hunter song in the fabulous romp through Darrell Bath's 'Never Trust a Blonde' with delightful sexy lyrics (not sexist, could be a bloke dying his barnet). a booming drum beat, raucous backing vocals, tinkling piano, screaming guitar solos, and a knowing wink to life on the wild side. To show this really was meant as a band effort, we then get a jaunt through Honest Plain John's 'Psycho Girl' with it's jangly guitar refrain and hypnotic chorus. The centre piece of the album is a rolling take on what could be the follow up to Mott the Hoople's final single 'Saturday Gigs', which was a look back at the six years of the life of a band, their achievements and failures. 'My Revolution' looks back at the proceeding twenty years, how things have not really changed that much apart from the slow aging process we all go through, and how we all think we have become smarter. But that I leave for you to decide. 'My Revolution' does have the knowing lyrics "No one told our wrinkles what to wear". The song is brought to a rousing conclusion very much in "All you need is Love" Beatles style with Ian Hunter adlibbing lyrics over the top of the fading chorus. 'Good Girls', another Honest Plain John song, could be "The Kinks" from their sixties heyday. 'Red Letter Day' is a great Hunter song that he had held onto for years without ever getting a decent occasion to get it down on tape. Well, this seemed the perfect time and was a beautiful ballad about returning home to your loved ones after time spent apart whilst going through rough times, and the determination to try and make up for lost time. It also includes a stunning emotional guitar solo from Darrell Bath. The Band then romp through three road songs that most people would die for to have in their repertoire, each single one would get people leaping about on the dance floor at a college hop.Hidden away as last song on this collection is one of Ian Hunter's most honest soul bearing laments, 'The Other Man', a song about taking your partner back after an affair with your best friend and how someone may take the partner back and never forget, but possibly forgive. But not the Other Man, who should of known better than to mess with your lady. 'The Other Man' has to be one of the best songs that Ian Hunter ever recorded. It is a shame that it did not get much exposure on its release, as it sure would of tugged on a few hearts strings and perhaps twanged a few guilt strings in other directions.
Mott the Dog."
Under-rated mid-1990s effort is actually pretty great!
W. Rabeneck | Arkansas United States | 05/28/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This is a CD that I've had since it was new (around 95 or 96?), and recently rediscovered.

I like it better now than I did then.

This is a really great Pop-Hard-Rock record that was kind of out of step with the Grunge era that it was released in. Really, this one is more in step, in a way, with the usually disrespected Hair-Metal movement, though it's of better quality, songwise, than the average Hair-Metal album, and doesn't contain the really fast, indulgent guitar solos.

I'll agree with the earlier reviewer too: "Never Trust A Blonde" is one of my favorite songs ever! A great track."