Marc Bolan - TILL DAWN (LP)
How many fingers does it take to make a rude sign? To find out, hold up all the digits of your right hand and subtract all the worthwhile remakes and re-recordings by the ‘original artist’ that you can think of. Now subtract two more. The problem of course is that the business called rock rarely rewards the creators of brilliant pop.
‘Till Dawn’ is a double LP set issued by Marc On Wax in 1985 and proves the rerecordings rule. Disc one is "remixes" of 72-76 material using the supposedly original T.Rex drummer Bill Legend. However, as Bill left T.Rex in 1973 you may wonder why he is doing such songs as ‘Laser Love’ from 1976. What you get is the same arrangement, mixed the same except the for the louder and not quite as sharp as before drummer. The only song to do anything more is ‘Children of the Revolution’ which benefits from an acoustic guitar intro.
Otherwise you’ll be left asking what’s the point of that then? This’ll be where the rude sign comes in.
Disc two is, or really I should say was, a revelation to me. Having done little more than exchange the occasional postcard with the Bolan universe for several years I found this double LP in a supermarket, and decided to reacquaint myself. If the remixes are a little so what, disc two is a USA Radio Session of acoustic Boley recorded in 1972. I’ve not looked back since.
Some of the songs here are still in working stage and have different lyrics to the eventually released version, ‘Main Man’ and ‘Spaceball Ricochet’ most notably. It’s very infectious. ‘Jeepster’ in particular starts out as a slow blues groove but gradually picks up the beat to near mania. ‘Girl’ however is treated with something approaching disdain as Boley spanks the plank a bit too enthusiastically for such a delicate melody. All in all this recording shows how the Bopping Elf earned his name.
Disc two has since been issued as part of the ‘Spaceball’ CD and is the basis for most of the ‘Acoustic Warrior’ overdub set. Parts of the disagreeable disc one set have begun to appear on the budget (ie non Demon) "greatest alternate hits" type of release. Disc two makes this set a must for all Boley vinyl fans, but if you’re happy with CD buy yourself a copy of ‘Spaceball’ instead.
Track List. Disc One, T.Rex, rerecordings with Bill Legend.
Till Dawn intro, Mad Donna, New York City, Born to Boogie, Metal Guru, Till Dawn, Children of the Revolution, Laser Love, Think Zinc, Venus Loon, Till Dawn reprise
Track List. Disc Two, Bolan solo with acoustic guitar radio session.
Spaceball Ricochet, Jeepster, Cosmic Dancer, Main Man, Ballrooms of Mars, Mystic Lady, Girl,