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Zinc Alloy & the Hidden Riders [Original recording remastered, Import]

Marc Bolan & T Rex Audio CD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Audio CD (8 Nov 2005)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: Original recording remastered, Import
  • Label: Rhino
  • ASIN: B000BH4YFY
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 278,337 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Disc: 1
1. Venus Loon
2. Sound Pit
3. Explosive Mouth
4. Galaxy
5. Change
6. Namless Wildness
7. Teenage Dream
8. Liquid Gang
9. Carsmile Smith And The Old One
10. You've Got Jive To Stay Alive - Spanish Midnight
See all 19 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. Venus Loon
2. Sound Pit (Parts 1 & 2)
3. Explosive Mouth
4. Galaxy
5. Change (Signs)
6. Namless Wildness
7. Teenage Dream
8. Liquid Gang
9. Carsmile Smith & The Old One
10. Spanish Midnight
See all 24 tracks on this disc

Product Description

DELUXE 2CD SET-rhino ean 081227321925

Customer Reviews

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4.5 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Interstellar superglamfunksoul 14 April 2003
By P. Sanders VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD
"Zinc Alloy" is generally seen as the beginning of Marc Bolan's wilderness years, between the heights of the early 70s and his TV rebirth shortly before his untimely death. It seems to me though that this is unfair. Yes, perhaps Bolan's music isn't as varied and clever as Bowie's, but it's still full of energy, soul and most importantly fun.
This album mixes the glam sound with the wonderful gospel-soul vocals of Bolan's then new partner Gloria Jones and friends. Sometimes they sound silky-smooth ("Change" and "The Leopards"); at other times they shriek, coo and squawk as though in a religious ecstacy ("Venus Loon" and "Liquid Gang") - the effect is intoxicating and explosive. The listener cannot help but be swept along by their magnificent voices.
Sometimes Bolan's slabs of guitar are laid over songs a little too thickly, but more often than not this album rewards repeated listening. Opener "Venus Loon" is unlike any other song you've ever heard; the orchestral pomp that climaxes the fantastic "Liquid Gang" sounds like Sergeant Pepper-era Beatles on a comedown. Bolan's bizarre lyrics are also as much fun as ever and as lewd as anything by Prince ("I want to lay my lips on your explosive mouth" indeed).
There is also a sense of Bolan's awareness of his own falling star - both on "Change" and especially the magnificent "Teenage Dream" that forms the backbone of this extraordinary record.
So, yes the title is probably trying too hard, and yes it's not as great or conceptually tight as, say, "Ziggy Stardust", but it certainly sounds a good deal more intergalactic than Bowie ever did. At a time when prog rock was rearing its dinosaur head, at least T-Rex knew how to have a laugh.
Great stuff.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful piece of musical art! 8 Jan 2009
By FAMOUS NAME VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD
Fourteen 'poetic' gems on this - from probably the greatest 'poet' of music that ever lived!

Includes just one hit single - and my favourite, the 'epic': 'Teenage Dream'. This was one of three 'Teenage' songs in the Top Twenty at the time, the other two being: ''Teenage Lament '74 (Alice Cooper) and 'Teenage Rampage' (The Sweet)

'Teenage Dream' was a beautiful orchestration that went on and on - climaxing with 'Don't do it to me babe...' yet had no real end. Full of wonderful poetic lyrics like: 'A broken God - of a rusty World' - fabulous! I purchased this album for that track alone, and wasn't disappointed! Full of art, melody and hidden meanings, this is most certainly an album to treasure from the late 'King of Glam'!

Great stuff!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful piece of musical art! 8 Jan 2009
By FAMOUS NAME VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD
Fourteen 'poetic' gems on this (original vinyl) - from probably the greatest 'poet' of music that ever lived!

Includes just one hit single - and my favourite, the 'epic': 'Teenage Dream'. This was one of three 'Teenage' songs in the Top Twenty at the time, the other two being: ''Teenage Lament '74 (Alice Cooper) and 'Teenage Rampage' (The Sweet)

'Teenage Dream' was a beautiful orchestration that went on and on - climaxing with 'Don't do it to me babe...' yet had no real end. Full of wonderful poetic lyrics like: 'A broken God - of a rusty World' - fabulous! I purchased this album for that track alone, and wasn't disappointed! Full of art, melody and hidden meanings, this is most certainly an album to treasure from the late 'King of Glam'!

Great stuff!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Interstellar Soul 10 Mar 2008
By DavyA TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Audio CD
This album showcases Marc's brave stab at rock / soul / funk fusion & an evolution of the T.Rex sound.
This album was a sea change in musical direction, as Marc integrated the influence of the sounds of black America with his own unique brand of rock & roll.
This is by no means the strongest T.Rex album & along with Bolan's Zip Gun, is probably the weakest of Marc's efforts.
However, Marc's attempts to create an "Interstellar Soul" sound, was innovative, if nothing else.
The sound evident on this album, evolved further on Zip Gun (although even Marc admitted the weaknesses in that record) & came to fruition on the hugely under rated Futuristic Dragon album (before a return to basics with the magnificent Dandy In The Underworld).
This has some hugley enjoyable tunes, along side some,at times, overblown efforts (at times some of the backing vocals take too much away from the songs)
Marc was trying something new but although I do enjoy this record, some of it doesn't quite come off & some of it sounds a bit lazy.
Still, Marc was ahead of the game with this album (which other British act at the time was trying to create this kind of sound ?)- not Bolan's best but worth having just to hear some innovative musical stylings we now often take for granted.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.6 out of 5 stars  17 reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Creamed Cage In August 12 Mar 2001
By Joh Bridge - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
First of all the album title is not such a copy of David Bowie's Ziggy Stardust. Marc Bolan can be quoted as saying in the late 1960's that when he reached the top of his fame he would change his name to Zinc Alloy. Also the album was intended to be called A Creamed Cage In August, by Zinc Alloy And The Hidden Riders Of Tommorrow, but his record company insisted the name T.Rex was on the front cover and so the album became known as Zinc Alloy. On the music side of things this is a very different sound to previous T.Rex albums. I get annoyed when people claim Bolan stuck to a formula and didn't experiment with new sounds. This album sounds a lot like Tyrannosaurus Rex electrified and futurised. I call the sound on this album Bolan's Cosmic Rock. Zinc Alloy is definatley a progression and a very enjoyable listen where individual songs are not important as they all blend together perfectly for the benefit of the album. The extended play on the reissue contain two singles and two b-sides that also work well with the original set. There is a lot of reflection in this album on songs like 'Change' and 'Sound Pit'. The album is a very bold change of direction for Bolan, highlighted I think, by the album cover, with the bold blue eyes daring you to explore his new sound. The songs have a spacey feel and I think the production is fine. I believe this is a much mis-understood album and definately worth buying.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An album that got sold short! 10 Dec 2005
By Josh Z. Bonder - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
While most people who are familiar with T. Rex will probably tell you the best albums are "Electric Warrior" and "The Slider", they aren't totally wrong. They probably didn't think twice about albums like this one though, as well as "Bolan's Zip Gun", albums that were far ahead of their time. The T.Rex sound is further augmented on this album, particularly through the dominant placement of backing vocals by Gloria Jones. It also has a funkier and more over the top production than the aforementioned albums, anticipating funk and electronic music yet to come. The result is an album which somehow manages to be both "psychedelic" and quite danceable at the same time.

In all, I would say that this is a very listenable and strong album, and would have probably received five stars if not for the somewhat superfluous bonus disc (weaker/unfinished alternate takes of most of the songs). The second half of the album also tends to sag just a bit thanks to one or two less interesting tracks. In all these don't deter from the quality of the other songs and the over-the-top experience that makes this album so unique within the T.Rex catalogue. If you like this, check out "Bolan's Zip Gun" as well, time is only now catching up to the accomplishments of these albums!
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The first signs of the T.Rex decine. 26 Jan 2006
By Geoffrey Warner - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
I have bought every T.rex album since Electric Warrior on both vinyl and CD and this was the first one that sounded like Marc Bolan was running out of ideas and getting tired. Although the album starts of promising, with powerful songs like "Venus Loon" and "Sound Pit" the album begins to weeken in the middle and never really recovers.Some of the tracks are rather plain and the style is a little bit all over the place.

A lot of it sounds over produced in areas, and the Gloria Jones backing vocals are overdone and uneccessary at times.It was always going to be hard to follow albums like Electric Warrior and The Slider and even Tanx,but Bolan needed a killer at this point in his career and this wasnt it.Having said that it is the last of the Tony Visconti productions and still has some worthwhile moments, although I wouldnt introduce T.Rex to anyone who hadnt heard them, via this album.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Unfair, in true pop fashion. 16 Dec 1999
By Erik Blood - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
I bought this album, knowing it would be a little different from his previous works, but knowing that Tony Visconti was still the producer. After being blown away by Tanx, I assumed that all of the rumors that The Slider was the last great T. Rex album were false. And again, Zinc Alloy proves them wrong.
It's no where near classic T. Rex, but it's far from bad. The addition of Gloria Jones (as backup singer, but sounding more like co-vocalist) is alarming, but quite nice at points, adding authenticity to the new soul direction Marc wanted to go in. The guitar experiments are sometimes shocking, sometimes unpleasant, but overall, they work.
The lyrics are weird, but they've always been weird. This time there's someone else singing them, too, which makes it more odd, but whatever! It's T. Rex!
If you're only interested in the material you may have heard on the radio, stick to Slider and Electric Warrior, even Tanx. If you like T. Rex, and want to know where they were headed, check this out with an open mind. Some artists grow, while some digress. Marc was growing, and I'm looking forward to finding out how much further he got.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Funky Bolan 26 Jan 2007
By Frank C. Tortorici - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Do not be scared off by what you've heard about this album. Yes, it began a rapid commercial decline for Marc Bolan and T. Rex, but undeservedly so. This was one of the first albums to fuse American funk sounds with English rock. Though it was recorded and released in England before Bowie's Young Americans album, it doesn't get the credit that album did for furthering funk rock since it was never issued in the States. The U.S. got half of this album coupled with half of Bolan's next UK issue (Bolan's Zip Gun)--Casablanca Records released it as Light of Love, which didn't perform well on the US album chart.

Overall though, Zinc Alloy is a better album than Young Americans, though it lacked a galvanizing title song like the Bowie classic. Some people were also put off by Bolan's girlfriend Gloria Jones' backing vocals coming out high in the mix. But you can't deny such catchy rockers as "Venus Loon," "Explosive Mouth" and "Nameless Wildness" or the era-ending ballad "Whatever Happened to the Teenage Dream." This edition also comes with the Top 5 UK single "The Groover" and amazing B-Sides like the hard-rocking "Midnight" and the pretty "Sitting Here."

Also, check out the guitar on the ballad "Change," which sounds like the Alice Cooper classic "Welcome to My Nightmare," released one year later.
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