The Mental Train’s a rollin’…

It’s probably fair to say that Mott the Hoople had a career of two halves. While it took the Bowie-penned to catapult them to commercial success, it is notable that despite the meagre sales of their previous four albums Mott the Hoople had recorded for Island Records, they had earned an enviable reputation as one of the best live acts around, and built a rabid live following. It’s a shame then that only Mott’s post-Dudes albums have been widely available for the past few years, denying fans the chance to hear the four albums on which they paid their hard-rocking hard-gigging dues and set about becoming one of the finest, yet under-appreciated, bands in the land.

That is until now.

It has been announced that UMC are releasing Mental Train (The Island Years 1969-71), a six CD box set, including Mott the Hoople’s four albums for Island, Mott the Hoople, Mad Shadows, Wildlife and Brain Capers, as well as bonus tracks for each, a fifth CD of bonus and unreleased material, and a sixth CD of live recordings from the era, all with sleeve notes. On top of this there will be a generous 50 page booklet tracing the evolution of Mott the Hoople, complete with rare photos and memorabilia.

Given the eye-watering prices of Mott the Hoople’s four Island albums demand on the second hand market, Mental Train will be an essential purchase for fans of the band who are only familiar with their post-Dudes glam-rock flecked output, and the few Island-era tracks that have emerged on various compilations down the years, as well as a handy catch-all package for those long term fans who want to replace their well-worn vinyl copies of those albums.

Mental Train will be released on 2 November, and the boxset can be ordered at mottthehoople.lnk.to/MentalTrain