Saturday, October 20, 2012

160 Electric Warrior. Lets Get It On

Album: Electric Warrior
Artist: T Rex
Genre: Rock
Year: 1971


1. Mambo Sun
2. Cosmic Dancer
3. Jeepster
4. Monolith
5. Lean Woman Blues
6. Get It On
7. Planet Queen
8. Girl
9. The Motivator
10. Life's a Gas
11. Rip Off

Well don't I feel like a bit of a dill. Silly, silly me.

For some reason I've been writing T Rex off for years. I've always believed they were a hugely over rated group that English people of a certain generation had latched onto because there wasn't much else being released when they were performing. The Beatles had broken up, The Stones and Zeppelin had passed their peak so children of the mid seventies had to make do with what they had and try and pretend it was worth making a lot of noise about.

Imagine my surprise then when I put Electric Warrior on and heard track one. Mambo Sun starts with a funky bassline that grooves along underneath Marc Bolan's uniquely whispered vocal stylings. Bolan's low-key singing is unlike anyone else I can think of and is instantly arresting. Hurl in a tasty guitar riff and all the ingredients are there for a great track. I have to confess it took my quite a few listens to get to the rest of the album because I was having such a nice time with track one.

I did eventually hear the rest of the album which means I heard Jeepster and Get it On, the two T Rex tracks that everyone who has ever listened to rock radio is familiar with. They're both great songs and actually sitting and listening to them made me realise how good they are. T Rex had a unique sound and nobody else was doing what they did at the time.

Sadly most of the rest of the album isn't quite as good. When T Rex try and sound like The Stones or Bowie they just don't manage to pull it off as well. Their attempts at Blues (Lean Woman Blues) comes years after white boy blues had run it's course and been done to death and their ballads (Cosmic Dancer) just don't work.

T Rex are one of those bands that struck out in their own unique direction and when they did they were great but when they try and follow ground people have trod often before they're not so hot. Still they're much better than I'd given them credit for and if you've never heard Mambo Sun (which is inexplicably left of their greatest hits compilations) give it a try. It's got my vote for one of the overlooked hits of the seventies.

Influenced by: The Stones and Bowie
Influenced: English alt-rock

Highlight: Mambo Sam
Lowlight: Lean Woman Blues

Favourite Amazon Customer Review Quote: "Im not an angry person bashing any old music. Im a musician bashing this bullfunk."

-Bullfunk? That sounds like a genre more than an insult.

So is this bullfunk or not? Let me know below.

1 comment:

  1. Great to make discoveries like T rex. Thats what this list is about. Well done using the word dill too. I havent heard that word since this album came out.