Marc Bolan & T. Rex

Live 1977

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Even with all the repackagings and reissues of the Marc Bolan/T. Rex catalog, authorized live albums were a rarity in the glam rocker's canon. Live attempts to correct this oversight by offering the first official high-quality T. Rex album. On paper, this sounds like a blessing for fans, but in reality, the disc is a disappointment. Live is culled from two shows form T. Rex's final tour in 1977. By this point, Bolan was no longer revered as a pop god and he was feebly trying to come to terms with punk and disco. Much of his disco influences are stripped out on Live and the punk stuff, including an 11 minute jam with his opening band the Damned on "Get It On (Bang A Gong)," sound forced. The glam numbers sound fine, but not particularly inspired and they certainly offer no revelations. In other words, it's one for the fans, who, ironically, will be more excited by the bonus disc that was included with the first editions of Live. That disc features a show T. Rex performed in 1974, when Bolan was still near his prime. It's sexy, sleazy and fun -- everything the actual Live isn't, which makes it all the more puzzling why this was the added attraction, not the main feature.

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