Mott the Hoople is the debut studio album by the band of the same name. It was produced by Guy Stevens and released in 1969 by Island Records in the UK (cat. no. ILPS 9108), and in 1970 by Atlantic Records in North America (cat. no. SD 8258). It was subsequently re-released by Angel Air in 2003 (SJPCD157).
Stevens, the group's initial mentor and guide, wanted to create an album that would suggest Bob Dylan singing with the Rolling Stones. This was partially achieved, with the album including several Dylanesque cover versions along with aggressive rock originals. Years later, vocalist Ian Hunter - who had only just joined the band prior to Mott the Hoople's recording and had yet to play live with them - would insinuate, in an August 1980 Trouser Press magazine interview, that the Stones' 1971 track "Bitch" bore more than a passing resemblance to this album's "Rock and Roll Queen." (Both songs are in the key of Am, and use the pentatonic scale.)
An instrumental version of The Kinks' "You Really Got Me" introduces the album, though a vocal version was recorded and is available on Mott's compilation release Two Miles From Heaven. Doug Sahm's "At the Crossroads" (originally recorded by Sahm's Sir Douglas Quintet in 1968) and Sonny Bono's "Laugh at Me" (originally issued by Sonny & Cher on their second full-length album in 1966, but without vocals from Cher) are suitably reminiscent of Bob Dylan, as is Hunter's "Backsliding Fearlessly."
Initial copies of the album were wrongly pressed with the song "The Road to Birmingham," the B-side of their debut single, replacing "Rock and Roll Queen."
The album's cover is a colourised reproduction of M. C. Escher's lithograph "Reptiles." In an interesting coincidence considering Guy Stevens' desire for Mott to sound like the Rolling Stones, in early 1969 Mick Jagger had approached Escher wanting to commission a painting for the cover of the Stones' upcoming album Let It Bleed; Escher declined the request