What did Buffin say about only recording one concert as a sign of incompetent management when talking about only recording one show out of their run on Broadway in the mid seventies.
Without his guiding hand the remaining Members of MTH have not done it once, but twice in 2009 and again in 2013. Its a matter of record that the concert recorded on this latest tour had sound problems including a microphone failure. I know for a fact that they admitted to a bootleg dealer in Camden Market in 2009 that the following nights were better than the first night which was the only one recorded on that tour. The first night is never the one to record, as you need to get into the swing and to also give yourselves the option of picking a best performance from at least two if not three recordings. I was at the Saturday night show in 2009 which was much better and included a cracking version of Dylan's 'Knocking on Heaven's door' and a Ray Charles song not done on other nights. (I have bootlegs of some of the other nights so I have been able to compare)
Don't get me wrong, I am a huge Mott fan who even bought the expensive, special deluxe book released to coincide with this tour so I could have a permanent, high class large format record of one of my favourite bands to go next to Campbell Divine's great biography. I also attended the premier of the Film - The Ballad of Mot the Hoople - at the South Bank. Also check out my review of the Croydon 1970 live album.
I do however have to say with great regret that it does look like this time the fans were not the real reason they toured, but it was to make as much money as possible. The O2 arena was the wrong venue- far too big so they could delude themselves they "had finally made the big league". I can see the logic of why they did it as "why do five nights at Hammersmith when we can play to the same number of people at the O2 in one night". It unfortunately backfired. There were lots of empty seats testamant to a lot of people who would have attended other venues in London not thinking it was the right venue - too big and impersonal and difficult to get to for those coming from outside London. Mott are not the Rolling Stones and that's why we loved them. Mott excelled in the smaller venues where they were near to their audience - they were never a stadium band, hence the Newcastle and Manchester gigs were the success stories of this tour.
I think the only way to atone is to book some studio time and record some songs which are important to their history as a final and more fitting thank you to their fans. I suggest:
re-recording 'Sweet Angeline' as the original studio version was a bit of a mess due to the chaos and not being allowed multiple takes to get it right. The studio version we have does not do justice to one of their greatest rockers
Like a Rolling Stone - as we only have a fragment of this Dylan song by them and they did it on at least one BBC session version long wiped and also as it was also Ian's audition song to join the band. It's time we had a full version of it for posterity, as they would do a great version.
I am also sure (if they can remember the arrangement they had worked out for it after all these years) they would make a great version of Bowie's 'Drive In Saturday' - the descending chorus is made for them to do another epic cover of Bowie to rival 'Dudes'.
A new version of 'Seadiver' with the missing Mick Ralphs soaring guitar outro which Buffin has referred to and now appears lost for ever, as the multi tracks of the Dudes album have apparently been lost.
Also how about a dvd of all existing TV apearances / promo videos, including those that have surfaced from the Island days and extracts of which were included in the great 'Ballad of MTH' Fiilm. These should include the films made by Mick Rock. I for one would love to see the full 'Honaloochie Boogie' promo video which has only been seen as an extract on 'Pop Quiz' hosted by Mike Reid years ago.
Come on Mott how about it?