Ian Hunter has no business putting out yet another fabulous record. He is 77 years old, for goodness sake. "Once Bitten, Twice Shy" is 40 years old! Isn't it time for his duets record with John Pizzarelli and Cyndi Lauper? Yet, "Fingers Crossed," released last Friday, is quite simply, fantastic!
Credit must be given to the fabulous Rant Band, who has been behind every Ian Hunter record since 2001's "Rant," the first in the string of 4-star releases. Ian Hunter and the Rant Band have been together three times longer than Mott The Hoople, and James Mastro, the rock Mark Bosch on lead guitar, Steve Holley, Paul Page and sometimes Andy Burton have a sound as recognizable as Mott. Great job, lads.
"Fingers Crossed" offers the same formula as "Rant," "Shrunken Heads," "Man Overboard" and "When I'm President" before it. You know, if it ain't broke....
Hunter can still deliver the heartbreak with his ballads, and maybe these ballads have become a bit more sentimental as he gets older. But the man and the band, can still rock with the best of them, too, like the glammy opener "That's When The Trouble Starts."
Not everything hits the nail on the head. I was a little surprised by the U2-ish influence on "Stranded In Reality." I like U2, please don't misunderstand me. I'm just not sure I like how their sound works behind Ian.
Two of the strongest are here for your listening pleasure. "Bow Street Runners" up top and the first single, which I had originally posted a few weeks ago, the lovely, chills-inducing tribute to David Bowie, and maybe even the ol' boys in Mott, as well, "Dandy."