Key To Music Grades

A - You will never be whole without it
B - Highly recommended
C - Flawed, but still pretty good
D - It's your money, not mine
F - Why couldn't this have been burned in Fahrenheit 451?

Thursday, November 15, 2007

T-Rex - Electric Warrior (1971)

Marc Bolan is said to have contributed more to the essence of glam rock than Bowie; whether such an inherently useless platitude can ever be proven is really secondary to the fact that Electric Warrior was certainly an important album at the time. If I were to describe the album using only one word, such a word would be "misleading." There's a certain casual frankness and feel to the singing and playing in just about every place on this record -- which is not to say it's lazy or laid-back, but that it exerts itself in such a fashion as to shed any predispositions of concern -- seemingly. Such a casual feeling does not denote a lack substance, though, because while the album does refashion older musical styles and whose entrance into our ears appears welcoming, this is not actually the case, as Bolan's vocal tones and lyrics indicate a much more savage mockery than a simple regurgitation of older styles and moods. Perhaps his previous work with fairies provides us with the wherewithal to make such erroneous assumptions.

Regardless, for those without such concerns for what music means, or expresses, and could care a whit for this or that, let's get under the hood, shall we? "Mambo Sun" opens the album, a delicate little mid-tempo romper with some very nuanced guitar licks. Much of the album, in fact, is not typical 70s guitar-heavy, to include the burgeoning glam movement the album was to help foster, and instead relies more on the guitar notes being in just the right places. This, of course, is in deep contrast with the fill-as-many-notes-in-the-measure music that was quite popular at the time -- not that I'm complaining about that, either. "Bang A Gong (Get It On)" is a well-known song with a splendid (and much copied) riff, a riveting chorus and some brass to add sass. "Jeepster" is a bit of a throwback to the rock style of the 50s but with an updated swagger. "Cosmic Dancer" is a warbling string-tinged folk ditty with some great electric guitar interspersed. Other notables: "Rip Off" and "The Motivator." Forgettables: "Girl"; "Monolith"; "Planet Queen"; "Lean Woman Blues"; "Life's A Gas." B-


Master Cianan said...

how dare you describe any album as important. No album is important.

The Mad Hatter said...

it's important to me! (and i knew you were going to say that!)

Anonymous said...

"important to me"... no album is important to anyone. it's just how much you like it. When you think of music as "important", it empowers blowhards like zach de la rocha and makes them act like even bigger twats.

"important"... as if your opinion counts around here.

master cianan said...

that last comment was me, by the way. I fucked up the name thing.