The January issue of The Wire (not in US stores yet) contains a feature I wrote on Noah Howard. The extended transcript of my interview with him is available on their website, here.
I wrote about Torche in the Scene this week. (Remember the discussion of The Big F? Here's where I bring it up again, for money this time.)
And in today's mail, four T.Rex 2-CD sets arrived - The Slider, Dandy In The Underworld, Zinc Alloy And The Hidden Riders Of Tomorrow and The T.Rex Wax Co. Singles A's and B's 1972-77. (Also, the 3-CD Grateful Dead Fillmore West 1969 set I bought a couple of weeks ago, and some absolute tripe - Jackson Browne's Running On Empty, now expanded to a CD/DVD pair; Jerry Garcia's Garcia Plays Dylan, another 2-CD set; the soundtrack to the musical Jersey Boys, about Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons; and Loggins & Messina's Sittin In Again At The Santa Barbara Bowl Live.)
Almost all of this stuff is gonna go straight to the used CD store at first opportunity. I might hang onto the T.Rex singles collection, but I'm more likely to just suck it into my iPod and rid myself of the physical item. I don't really get them; they seem like rock music for small children. There are one or two songs with decent riffs, but there are twelve or thirteen other songs that recycle each of those exact same riffs, to severely diminished effect. So, no, Bolan was not a genius, or anything like it. It seems to me that he was actually pretty much the ultimate embodiment of the kind of thing that gets huge in England and makes absolutely no sense in America. Which is fine. Brits and Anglophiles can love his stuff for the rest of their wack-ass, misguided lives if they want; it means nothing to me. But neither does The Slider.