Electric Warrior

T. Rex

Reprise, 1971


REVIEW BY: Jeff Clutterbuck


I missed out on a great many unique events in rock history. Woodstock, the Disco Burning at Comiskey, Live Aid, the list goes on. The same goes for those periods in rock where genres came and went within a few short years. Exhibit A: glam rock.

I think it is practically impossible for a youngster such as myself to truly understand what the big deal with glam rock was. It sprouted from a time that was very different from the modern age. Now sure, I could listen to the major artists in the genre, but that doesn’t necessarily mean I can “get it.”my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

So coming in to Electric Warrior, I didn’t know what to expect. Thankfully, that didn’t matter at all in the grand scheme of things, because instead of being dated or overtly glam, this is a straight up great album.

Marc Bolan is one of the underrated musicians of the '70se, and Electric Warrior offers proof of that. While this isn’t the most mind-blowing piece of rock that I’ve ever heard, it’s different than most; there are elements of music that Bowie, ELO and even the Stones would later employ.

Electric Warrior is very basic in its sound, though there are the occasional production flourishes. A string section makes its way into a track or two, but overall this album defines “stripped down” in a way not seen since the Stooges (as opposite from glam as rock can get). Seeing as how this is the case, the songs have to step up to bat and deliver, which they do for the most part.

Someone has to convince me that the Stones did not completely rip off “Bang A Gong (Get It On)” for “It’s Only Rock N Roll.” The pacing, the tone, even the sound is extremely similar. But that’s a minor issue; Electric Warrior doesn’t rock as much as it shuffles along. Rarely does Bolan launch into blistering, fast-paced solos.

Wordplay also is a major component to Electric Warrior. Surreal might be the best word to describe Bolan’s lyrics, which creates an interesting paradox between them and the “poppy” tone of the music itself. It becomes so easy to get caught in the fun that it would not surprise me if some people would just skip over the words. Try not to, otherwise you’ll miss out lines like “I said girl I'm just a vampire for your love / I'm gonna suck you.”

Electric Warrior is decidedly weird, but for all the directions it goes off in, it remains a damn fine listen. This is the kind of album that defines music as entertainment.

Rating: A-

User Rating: A


No one ever mentions "The Motivator" when talking about this album. I personally think it's the best song. Peter

© 2007 Jeff Clutterbuck and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Reprise, and is used for informational purposes only.