Ian Hunter and the Rant Band – Just Another Night (2005)

by | Jun 3, 2005 | DVD & Blu-ray Video Reviews | 0 comments

Ian Hunter and the Rant Band – Just Another Night (2005)

Studio: Secret Films
Video: 16:9 widescreen, all region but PAL (not NTSC; see below)
Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1 
Length: Approx. 180 minutes 
Rating: *****

So just what does a former British rock star have to do to get a
performance DVD released in the US NTSC format?  Heck, Ian Hunter
already moved to Connecticut from England.  What more do you
want?  Of course, Mr. Hunter was the shades wearing, corkscrew
hair wielding, masterful frontman for the legendary Mott The Hoople,
one of the prime bands associated with the Glam movement of the
1970s.  The fact that they were more of a supercharged
working-class outfit with supreme lyrical irony and sophisticated
arrangements went almost unnoticed.   They adopted “the suits
and the platform boots” so they were categorized as a mere fashion
trend when they were so very much more.  That’s what a first hit
like the anthemic “All The Young Dudes” will do to you.

But Ian Hunter (at age approximately 65) continues to grace the stage,
now playing clubs throughout Europe and the US on a continual
basis.  He remains majestically mesmerizing in performance, while
composing some of the most intelligent, mature and thought-provoking
songs of our time.  This particular show was filmed in 2004 at the
Astoria in London.  Band members include usual guitarist cohort
Andy York of John Cougar Mellencamp fame.  The other members are
his normal-type troup of spectacularly solid rhythm support.  A
true bonus is the presence of former Mott The Hoople and Bad Company
guitarist Mick Ralphs.  On the rollicking closing number of “All
The Way From Memphis” Queen’s Brian May also lends his axe talents,
while Def Leppard’s Joe Elliott helps with vocals.

It is very difficult to identify highlights when basically the whole
show is one big great time had by all.  21 tracks of pure
decades-spanning dynamite!  OK – maybe if restricted to 10 cuts
I’d go with “Once Bitten Twice Shy / I Wish I Was Your Mother / Knees
of My Heart / 23A Swan Hill / The Truth, The Whole Truth, Nothin’ But
The Truth (with massive York & Ralphs guitar) / Saturday Gigs / All
The Young Dudes / Dead Man Walkin’ / Just Another Night / All The Way
From Memphis “.  But then I’d be shortchanging ” Rest In Peace /
Twisted Steel / Irene Wilde / Cleveland Rocks / Michael Picasso
(Hunter’s eloquent tribute to his late former partner Mick

The DVD includes a fascinating sound check as a bonus feature, along
with an interesting interview with Ian.  Getting back to the PAL
encoding format – there is something that can be done for proper TV
playback here in the states.  If you own a DVD writer, it can be
copied for NTSC Region 1 (US and Canada).  Just make darn sure it
is for PURCHASER USE ONLY.  So one only has to buy it on the
internet and, assuming one does not have a true all-region player,
simply burn a copy on one’s computer.  It is a ridiculous way to
have to obtain a classic performance by an  under-recognized star,
but it’ll certainly result in one of the best investments for your
music video performance collection.  This one is not to be
missed.  A superb job all around featuring a guy with supreme
stage presence who just won’t stop rockin’.

– Birney K. Brown


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