The Upshot: Rock ‘n’ roll may be a young man’s game, but Hunter continues to prove that those young dudes have nothing on his years as a venerable musical master
BY LEE ZIMMERMAN
At the ripe old age of 77, Ian Hunter proves that age has done nothing to suppress the inner fire of a genuine rock ‘n’ roll purist, even one with a career that’s nearly half a century mark in the rear view mirror. His new album maintains his trademark petulance as well as moments of hoary reflection, but the fact that Hunter has never been forced to lower his standards or tamper with his template proves that invincibility is still a realistic goal for one who’s so well disciplined. Naturally, there are moments of remorse — his ode to mentor and career saviour David Bowie on “Dandy” is as moving as one might expect given the two men’s shared history — and his bow to an earlier era via “Ghosts” and various world weary ballads find an allegiance to tradition as opposed to suddenly succumbing to the ardour of past glories.
Indeed, there are plenty of rockers — “Fingers Crossed” and “Bow Street Runners” among them — to affirm the fact that Hunter’s as revved up as ever and still in fighting form. His voice — a smoky blend of Dylan-esque desire — is as resolute as always, and if his many decades of treading the boards finds him sounding slightly weary, he’s no more circumspect than usual. Rock ‘n’ roll may be a young man’s game, but Hunter continues to prove that those young dudes have nothing on his years as a venerable musical master.
DOWNLOAD: “Dandy,” “Fingers Crossed,“ “Ghosts”