The Hunter Ronson Band

BBC Live in Concert

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Ian Hunter and Mick Ronson were coming back from half a decade of semi-retirement when they toured without a record contract in early 1989. But at the time of their stop at the Dominion Theatre in London on February 15, chronicled on this 73-and-a-half-minute, 13-track disc, they had already begun to compile the new material that would be included on their excellent Y U I ORTA album. So the show consisted of old Hunter favorites like the U.K. Top Ten hit by his old group Mott the Hoople, "All the Way from Memphis," and his own U.K. Top 40 hit "Once Bitten Twice Shy," plus six songs that would turn up on the album, including powerful Hunter compositions like "Following in Your Footsteps" and "Big Time" (which was misidentified here as "You're Never Too Old to Hit the Big Time," the chorus line is actually "You're never too small to hit the big time"). The Hunter/Ronson live sound had previously been displayed on the 1980 album Welcome to the Club, with which this set shared many selections, and it remained an effective combination, with Ronson playing powerful hard rock lead guitar to support Hunter, the frontman, and his plaintive, autobiographical songs. If anyone feared that the two had lost their rock & roll fervor after the lay-off, this concert dispelled that notion. It's no surprise they earned another record contract soon after.

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