Thursday, March 19, 2009

Ian Hunter: "I Need Your Love"

Its not a great song, but it's a good song. And it's from a good album, not a great album. But when three of your favorite artists, all playing what is essentially three different genres of music in 1981, convene for a big ol' hootenanny, it's hard to pay attention to small details. My ears heard nothing but the signature Todd Rundgren harmonies behind the man who brought us Mott The Hoople, singing with one half of The Clash. "I Need Your Love," from Ian Hunter's "Short Back 'n' Sides" got respectable FM airplay, right alongside "Central Park And West" and "Lisa Likes Rock N Roll," all from Hunter's 1981 "new wave release."

Here's a bit of what All Music has to say about this record:

On this 1981 album, Ian Hunter gives his sound a new wave makeover. This is achieved through the efforts of producer Mick Jones, one of the leading creative forces in the Clash and a longtime disciple of Hunter's work. The end result occasionally catches fire but fails to work just as often. Jones' production style emulates the dense, cluttered production style of the Clash's then-current album, Sandinista: "Noises" is a gimmicky spoken word number drenched in synthesizer effects and "Theatre of the Absurd" has a spacy reggae sound reminiscent of the Clash's "Junco Partner." This avant-garde approach is hit and miss when applied to Hunter's traditional style of songwriting: "Lisa Likes Rock 'N' Roll" works nicely because the gimmicky sound effects fall into line to support the song's retro-rock melody but the synthesizer effects that dominate "Noises" bury its spoken dialogue instead of enhancing it. Also, some of the songs come off surprisingly under-produced despite the thick soundscapes.

"Short Back 'n' Sides" has been long out of print, though you can download the whole record for less than $10 on

Here is "I Need Your Love." ZIP FILE


the sandwich life said...

oh good Lord....I get up on an iffy morning and then I see Ian Hunter in my google reader....gotta love you Sal....and I never did thank you for the disc of your top 100. I've enjoyed it greatly for as many things as we have in common it also introduced to some new things!

cmealha said...

As I get older I forget about little gems like this one. Thanks for clearing the cobwebs.