105. ballrooms of Mars

“It’s easy to file T-Rex away as a glammed up (and out) pop monster whose singles absolutely nailed the zeitgeist for a year or three in the early 1970s, and they certainly did all that (in Britain anyway). But main man Marc Bolan could also just lay down a brilliant song – poetic, psychedelic, vaguely surreal, rather like the times, but also timeless, with Ballroom Of Mars (found on 1972’s Slider) exhibit A in this regard. Because that’s how I found it, at least a decade after the fact, wasting a day, drinking red wine so cheap the only way to make it palatable was to pour it over ice, maybe add a touch of something sweet. But the sun was shining and the company was good and … holy shit, who is this? It’s T-Rex, of course, gripped in the arms of the changeless madman. It means something.” (Philip Random)

(image source)
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268. ride a white swan

“If you’re British, you’ve likely heard plenty of T-Rex in your time, maybe way too much. But over here in the Americas a track like Ride A White Swan never cracked pop radio back in the day, so it still retains the kind of freshness that turns heads, gets people nodding along, smiling, wondering, ‘Who is this?’ Like it was recorded last week, not better part of half a century ago. Still makes me smile pretty much every time I hear it, Marc Bolan’s oddly spry little ditty about skyways, sunbeams, druids and tatooed gowns. Some say it invented Glam. I ain’t arguing.” (Philip Random)

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646. King of the Rumbling Spires

Apparently this is the first time Marc Bolan really rocked out on record. The band was still called Tyrannosaurus Rex at the time, and despite the name, a comparatively lightweight outfit – too much flowers and fine herbs, not enough thunder and rumbling. But that had to change. The 1970s were looming, the acid was wearing off, the hippie dream was much further away than it had previously seemed. Maybe it had never been there at all. Just another storybook fantasy.

TyrannosaurusREX-1969

20. The Solid Time Of Change

Part twenty of the Solid Time of Change aired Saturday November-5-2016 c/o CiTR.FM.101.9.

Podcast (Solid Time starts a few minutes in). Youtube playlist (incomplete and not entirely accurate).

This continues to be Randophonic’s main focus, our overlong yet incomplete history of the so-called Prog Rock era (presented in countdown form) – 661 selections from 1965 through 1979 with which we hope to do justice to a strange and ambitious time indeed, musically speaking.

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Part twenty of the journey went as follows:

  1. T-Rex – once upon the seas of Abyssinia
  2. T-Rex – king of the rumbling spires
  3. Electric Light Orchestra – new world rising + king of the universe
  4. Strawbs – starshine angel wine
  5. Triumvirat – illusions on a double dimple
  6. Yes- time and word
  7. Yes – then
  8. Banco del Mutuo Soccorso – miserere alla storia
  9. Fleetwood Mac – albatross
  10. Fleetwood Mac – hypnotized
  11. Genesis – I know what I like [in your wardrobe]
  12. Genesis – los endos
  13. Caravan – nine feet underground

Fresh episodes air pretty much every Saturday night, starting 11 pm (Pacific time) c/o CiTR.FM.101.9, with streaming and download options available within twenty-four hours via our Facebook.

1045. Debora

Way back when in 1968, T-Rex was still known as Tyrannosaurus Rex and Mark Bolan was pretty much a complete unknown prone to spilling his cosmic hippie soul (and related poetry) all over the place, which made for some great records even if, sadly, Debora probably wasn’t even listening.

(photo: Ray Stevenson)