Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Albums of All Time – #491: Mott the Hoople – All the Young Dudes (1972)

This set of glam-rock with sass was a pleasant surprise for yours truly.

Mott

This sounds very 70s, and I mean that in a good way.  Any dive bar worth its salt was probably blaring a song or two from this record during the Ford and Carter administrations.  The title track is a take on being young and carefree, complete with an incredibly catchy chorus.  Ian Hunter’s vocals are nothing to write home about but the lyrics are direct and offer some sneering critques against posers and the establishment.  The guitar work is at times as good as anything heard on the music of the much more popular bands of the time, especially on “Jerkin’ Crocus” and “Ready for Love/After Lights”, the latter of which could be a Scorpions hit in an alternate universe.

Oh, and there is the ever-present cowbell, which works best on the album opener and my favorite track, “Sweet Jane”.  The guitar work on that song reminds me of a track Tom Waits would write over a decade later, “Downtown Train”.  All in all this is a fun listen and makes me wonder why this band never really caught on.  I mean, at #491 it is definitely not as amazing or essential as Vitalogy (#492) or a few of the other albums I’ve covered on this list so far, but this deep cut isn’t completely out of place on this list.

Worthy Tracks: “Sweet Jane”, “All the Young Dudes”, “Jerkin’ Crocus”, “Ready for Love/After Lights”

Final Verdict: All the Young Dudes is a solid if unheralded album that is a fun listen and seems like a fringe pick for this list.

Spotify album link: https://open.spotify.com/album/3LdlOZcV0dp7ePBXe2KAGa?si=gU8x0xQRTEGGvRZaZplaHw