This is, of course, a biased opinion. I first went to see Rory Gallagher live, at the Caird Hall in Dundee, when this album came out so it was the first album of his that I owned. In those days I guess we all had a bit less money so an album purchase was a more considered thing. As a result this was one of about 20 albums I had for quite a long time and the only one of his, although I had a friend who later had Against the Grain and another who had Live in Europe, I still heard this most.
I heard him play all the tracks from this album live and most of them several times. Hands Off was a live favourite along with Walk On Hot Coals so the songs here are key to its strength as an album but there is also the brilliant guitar playing with a balance of serious and comic, Unmilitary Two-Step always brings a smile to my face.
He always seemed genuinely happy to be playing when I saw him live and all the evidence is that this was when he was most alive, but I have a lingering sadness for the man off stage. He clearly had an unhealthy relationship with alcohol, which ultimately killed him, and I always wonder about his personal relationships. His public face was that of a hard working, hard drinking musician who was well respected by his peers and I guess that is all I, or anyone, needs to know. The music he left behind is wonderful and this is a great place to start. I will always think of this as the ultimate Rory Gallagher band but I now have all his albums and I would urge you to investigate some more, the man was obviously driven to make the music he so loved.