Author:Geoffrey Feakes / Peter Gallagher
I’ve had a somewhat on/off relationship with Steve Hackett’s music over the years. I loved his early solo efforts particularly Voyage of the Acolyte (still his best work for me), Please Don’t Touch and Spectral Mornings, but I lost touch with his releases for the next twenty years or so after a series of somewhat patchy efforts rather dimmed my interest. Dipping into them again in the course of reading this book, I have to say I didn’t really miss anything of any great import. I only really reconnected in 1996 with the first of Genesis Revisted releases, but since then he’s put together a run of very good and consistent albums of new material while continuing to keep the Genesis flame burning. From reading last year’s autobiography he seems something of a marmite character, but this is a good, indeed exhaustive, song by song look at all his numerous albums and the stories behind their creation.
T Rex is one of those bands that still immediately invoke memories of my early teens even after all these years. I had Electric Warrior (one of my first album purchases), together with The Slider and Tanx which, I suspect, may have arrived on birthdays or at Christmas. I’d say these are the three essential Bolan albums to have, and songs like Metal Guru, Jeepster and Twentieth Century Boy still put a spring in my step to this day. I dipped into the early folk/hippy influenced records at around the same time but they left me baffled and disappointed, and in later years there was a sudden terminal decline in fortunes as Bolan’s ego, aided by drink and drugs, got the better of him and quality control went out of the window. This is a comprehensive look at all the extensive catalogue, although I do feel the author is sometimes on a wild goose chase trying to interpret and find hidden meaning in the lyrics, which to me mostly seem to be words that just sound good together and happily happen to rhyme! An interesting read though on a talent that briefly burned brightly but then seemed to be extinguished all too quickly – has there ever been quite such a rapid decline in fortunes I wonder, from topping the charts to relative obscurity in the space of a just a couple of years.
Length of Read:Short
Might appeal to people who enjoyed…
Written by fans for fans.
One thing you’ve learned
You can’t be a good dose of nostalgia.