For the Fans
T. McCool | Lafayette, IN United States | 04/28/2004
(3 out of 5 stars)
"In 1980, Island Records let Mott drummer Dale (Buffin) Griffin raid the vaults and compile this collection of rarities and outtakes. Many of these tracks appeared on the now out of print 3 CD anthology released exclusively in the UK by Sony. This one disc compilation presents the best of that box set plus other tracks here for the first time on CD. Standout tracks include a Mick Ralphs vocal version of the band's instrumental take on You Really Got Me from their first album. A very early demo of Moving On proves that Mott had the chops for this song before Ralphs left Mott to help found Bad Company. Demos from the band's breakthrough album, All the Young Dudes, proves that David Bowie didn't necessarily "make" this band as much as he "saved" it when he convinced them to reunited and produced the aforementioned classic. This CD also provides proof that Ian Hunter was not the only songwriter in the band. Ralphs shows an affinity for country rock as well as rock and roll on several tracks. The two bonus tracks are the most essential of any in this Angel Air series of releases. Highly recommended for fans, but not a proper introduction for the uninitiated."
Collection of demos and other unreleased tracks
Wayne Klein | My Little Blue Window, USA | 12/15/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
""Two Miles From Heaven" (the title is taken from a line in Willard MacManus' novel MOTT THE HOOPLE)gathers up the singles that didn't chart, rare demos and unfinished material that Mott The Hoople tackled during their short but prolific life. Some of the material included here ended up on the Mott The Hoople anthology boxed set "All The Young Dudes" (sadly, out of print now)but there's still plenty of interesting material here that DIDN'T make that set and will make this worthwile for Mott The Hoople fans.
Mick Ralphs truly shines on this set. His previously unreleased tracks "Going Home" and "Black Hills" as well as the raritiy "Little Christine" appear here. We also get two Ian Hunter tracks that hadn't been released before now "Growin' Man Blues" and "(There's an)Ill Wind Blowing". All five tracks SHOULD have been released but Mott The Hoople rarely looked back as they were moving forward towards fame and glory with the Bowie/Glam years ahead. Add the studio version of the popular live favorite (which appeared on "Wildlife" in a killer live version) "Keep-A-Knockin'" which Guy Stevens HATED (it's quite marvelous actually)and you've got enough essential material for hardcore Mott The Hoople fans. It also covers enough of the material on the boxed set so that you won't truly be missing much if you can't get it for a decent price.
We also get the single b-side "The Debt" and the single A-side "Downtown" as bonus tracks.
The remastering is quite good here and the album despite the fact that the tracks range from 1969 (the vocal version of "You Really Got Me" to the demo recording of "Movin' On" which Mick Ralphs re-recorded with Bad Company)to 1972 holds together pretty well all things considered. There's truly not a bad track on here.
The liner notes are extensive covering each song, when it was recorded and how it was later completed by Pete "Overend" Watts, Dale Griffin and other former members of Mott The Hoople (or Mott) for this compilation. Recommended but pick up their core albums first."