The Joup Friday Album: T. Rex – Electric Warrior

trexOne of these days, I’m going to walk into a smoky, dimly lit room, an assorted crew of characters therein talking amongst themselves, sipping their cocktails or beers, and staring at walls or into space. And the light will shine behind me as I open the door, heads looking up and peering from around the room. And, as if on cue, T. Rex’s “Monolith” will begin playing, and I’ll smile and enter.

There are few albums as effortlessly cool as T. Rex’s 1971 glam rock opus Electric Warrior, like that sleazy older guy who used to buy you alcohol when you were a minor. The record is all about girls and cars and dancing, love and fun and absurdity, a grand statement of nothing, awash in aloofness and a lack of pomposity. It’s back-to-basics songwriting, forty minutes of freewheeling lyrics and ear-worm infectious guitar riffs. It’s playful, daydream theatrics, makeup and glitter and sweat smeared across the ever-expanding universe. It’s fun and bouncy, beautiful and swaying, and it influenced everything. You can hear main man Marc Bolan in the punkers, the metal-heads, and the new-romantics. You can hear him in the freak-folk troubadours, the garage bangers, and the bedroom magicians. Electric Warrior grooves from start to finish, and it feels like it’s always just been there…if that makes any sort of sense. It’s seemingly universal in its appeal, a rock n’ roll outing for the ages.

Whether it’s the spaced-out, wistful yearning of “Cosmic Dancer,” the sex, love, and slick groove of “Jeepster,” the accidental mysticism of “Life’s a Gas,” or the banging party anthem of “Bang a Gong (Get it On),” Electric Warrior is pure, glittery gold. It kick-started the glam rock scene of the 1970’s, sent a million guitarists down the road on their own sonic explorations, and still manages to sound like the hippest of all the hip kids over 40 years later.

Marc Bolan made a ton of music during his all-too-short stint on this planet, all of which is worthy of your time and money, and Electric Warrior is a great entry point. Listen to it. Buy it. Obsess about it. Listen to it again. And then check out all of T. Rex’s discography while you’re at it.

“But it really doesn’t matter at all. No, it really doesn’t matter at all. Life’s a gas, I hope it’s gonna last.”

 

And that brings us back to you Sara.

 

Thomas H Williams

Thomas H Williams

From a bunker somewhere in Central Texas, Thomas H. Williams spends most of his time with his wife, his two sons, and his increasingly neurotic dog. He listens to a lot of music, drinks a lot of excellent beers, and gets out from time to time. For even more shenanigans, visit heavenisanincubator.blogspot.com.

2 Responses to The Joup Friday Album: T. Rex – Electric Warrior
  1. Chester Whelks Reply

    I always assumed Bolan was one of our domestic gems that never exported due to his seeming absence from US culture. Good to know this isn’t the case.

  2. Shawn C Baker

    Shawn C Baker Reply

    “…makeup and glitter and sweat smeared across the ever-expanding universe.”

    I sincerely hope that I am one of the heads looking up – maybe even the one who puts Monolith on the box – as you enter that smoky room with the light coming in behind you. That would make me happy.

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