Ian Hunter-Defiance Part 1-Album Review-Planetmosh

Ian Hunter

Reviewed by:
On 1 June 2023
Last modified:1 June 2023


Ian Hunter returns with a whose who of rock royalty with his new solo album Defiance Part 1.

It’s not very often I get to review music by one of my heroes, let alone them being born in the same town of Oswestry, Shropshire that sees Ian Hunter, best known as lead singer for Mott The Hoople from 1969-74 releasing his twenty third star studded solo album Defiance Part 1 on Sun Records at the ripe old age of 83 proving that music does keep you young at heart!

The album came together in the seventh decade of his career during lockdown with longtime collaborator guitarist, producer, multi-instrumentalist Andy York with only a computer, guitar, V5 piano and a very small keyboard. Demos were created but quarantine rules prevented Ian’s Rant Band to record them so photographer Ross Halfin suggested reaching out to some of Ian’s fellow legends, also in lockdown, contribute a track or two but it escalated immediately with Ian proclaiming “The whole things been a fluke, a lovely fluke”.

The album kicks off with ‘Defiance’ and does what the title suggests as Ian delivers his vocal with a snarl as Slash plays some tasty lead guitar, pinned down by bass prowess from Robert Trujillo.

‘Bed Of Roses’, first single released sees snappy snare work from Ringo Starr and guitars from Mike Campbell provide soothing tones around a heavenly lead vocal as the song ends on a rocking outro.

‘No Hard Feelings’ is guitar laden as Jeff Beck provides lead guitar, joined by Johnny Depp on acoustic, electric rhythm guitar, slide guitar and backing vocals. It’s a dirt under the fingernails song that takes no prisoners as Ian wears his heart on sleeve for a tearjerking ballad that muscles up for a guitar drenched midsection.

Ian takes piano duties for ‘Pavlov’s Dog’ giving me a bit of a Rolling Stones vibe from some barroom boogie par excellence!

‘Don’t Tread On Me’ features Todd Rundgren. Put up or shut up lyrics are the real deal here, backed by gospel tinged segments to as Todd provides lead, rhythm guitars and backing vocals.

My album highlight is ‘Guernica’, featuring Mike Campbell on lead and rhythm guitar with added backing vocals from Joe Elliott for this epic to end all epics as an almost whispered vocal adds ethereal touches over a Springsteen like storytelling.

Pulsing electronica adds a surge to ‘I Hate Hate’ as Ian adds prominent piano touches and a strong jawed vocal that escalates towards a dance floor filling outro.

‘Angel’ is a big hitter as Taylor Hawkins adds drums of course and guitar, electric piano and backing vocals. Duff McKagan handles bass guitar duties and slide guitar comes from Brad Whitford as the song spreads its wings for a heavenly heartbreaker, so fragile it could almost implode and nirvana is reached by a midway guitar solo and a skin tingling outro.

‘Kiss N Make Up’ is a sassy and classy party starter and finisher feelgood summer tinged toetapper for a short but sweet hoedown peppered with fretboard fury from Billy Gibbons, Taylor Hawkins on drums and lead vocals, backing vocals and percussion comes from Billy Bob Thornton.

This stunning album closes with ‘This Is What I’m Here For’ so move the furniture out of the way and strut your funky stuff for this celebration of life song as Ian has the most fun on this one and joining in with the choruses is mandatory as it ends on a refrain of “Might as well enjoy it”. Once again drums come from Taylor Hawkins, Joe Elliott on backing vocals and Waddy Watchel on lead and rhythm guitar.

Purchase links for the album and other band info are here :- https://ianhunter.com/ I https://www.instagram.com/ianhunterdotcom/ I https://twitter.com/ianhunterdotcom I https://www.facebook.com/ianhunterdotcom Ihttps://www.youtube.com/channel/UCeylzq67W-72o6lBty_yeng/featured

Ian proclaims that “There are a lot of reasons for calling this album DEFIANCE. It’s like people my age shouldn’t be making records, blah, blah, blah, but we’ve still got a bit left!”

“When I was thirty, I was over the hill, fifty years later, I still kill” Point proven as Defiance Part 2 is on the way!

Album track listing :-


Bed Of Roses.

No Hard Feelings.

Pavlov’s Dog.

Don’t Tread On Me.


I Hate Hate.


Kiss N Make Up.

This Is What I’m Here For.

Ian Hunter returns with a whose who of rock royalty with his new solo album Defiance Part 1.

About Dennis Jarman

Full time downtrodden album/gig reviewer and part time rock God!