Futuristic Dragon

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Futuristic Dragon
FuturisticDragon TRexalbum.jpg
Studio album by T. Rex
Released 30 January 1976
Recorded MRI Studios, Hollywood and Paragon Studios, Chicago, United States; Scorpio Sound, London, England
Genre Glam rock
Length 40:22
Label EMI
Producer Marc Bolan
T. Rex chronology
Bolan's Zip Gun
(1975)
Futuristic Dragon
(1976)
Dandy in the Underworld
(1977)
Singles from Futuristic Dragon
  1. "New York City"
    Released: 1975
  2. "Dreamy Lady"
    Released: 1975

Futuristic Dragon is the eleventh studio album and a UK-only release by English glam rock act T. Rex, released on 30 January 1976 by record label EMI.

Content[edit]

The album features some unusually dense production from Bolan, with hints that he had been listening to old Phil Spector records, especially "Chrome Sitar" and "Calling All Destroyers", which contained unusual musical embellishements such as sitar and other sonic sound effects.[citation needed]

The album features sleeve illustration by artist George Underwood, who had first worked with Bolan on the 1968 Tyrannosaurus Rex album My People Were Fair and Had Sky in Their Hair... But Now They're Content to Wear Stars on Their Brows.

Background[edit]

Live recordings of the successful tour T. Rex undertook that year in the UK (the first since the birth of his son with Gloria Jones, Rolan Bolan) show him to be returning to form from the cocaine addiction, alleged Napoleon complex and weight gain which had plagued him since late 1973, when his star began to fall.[citation needed] In many of these bootleg recordings, often done by members of the audience, Bolan thanks the audience for coming, and admits that he did not know if they would. He was heartened by the response received on the two aforementioned hit singles, and set to work on a new album immediately.[citation needed]

One factor which also sparked Bolan's renewed interest in music was the emergence of punk.[citation needed] Photos from early 1977 show Bolan at a pub/restaurant with members of The Ramones.[citation needed] He toured in spring 1977 with The Damned,[citation needed] and on the Granada TV show Marc, which he hosted, guests of his included The Boomtown Rats, The Jam, and Generation X.

Release[edit]

Preceded by the release of two UK Top 40 hit singles from the album, "New York City" (No. 15) and "Dreamy Lady" (No. 30),[citation needed] Futuristic Dragon was released on 30 January 1976,[citation needed]. It reached No. 50 in the UK Albums Chart; T. Rex's first album to register in the charts since Zinc Alloy and the Hidden Riders of Tomorrow in 1974.[citation needed]

Futuristic Dragon was remastered for CD by Edsel Records in 1994 as part of their extensive T. Rex reissue campaign. A number of bonus tracks were added (see below). A companion release, entitled Dazzling Raiment (The Alternate Futuristic Dragon), was released in 1997 and contained alternative versions, studio rough mixes and solo recordings of the main album and bonus tracks. A combined album digipak was released in 2002.

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 3/5 stars[1]
Pitchfork 6.7/10[2]
PopMatters 7/10[3]

Futuristic Dragon' was reasonably well-received by critics.

In her retrospective review of the album, Whitney Strub of PopMatters wrote "By the time Futuristic Dragon arrived, Bolan was considered a has-been. But the album defies expectation, presenting a surprisingly consistent set of tunes dovetailing with the burgeoning disco scene without entirely partaking of it."[3] Stephen M. Deusner of Pitchfork wrote "Futuristic Dragon has enough winning moments to suggest an upturn [...] [the album] blows smoke on its second half, with songs like 'Sensation Boulevard' and the schlock-disco 'Ride My Wheels' derailing the first half's chugging momentum. Nevertheless, the album wins your sympathies: It's good enough to make you wish it were better."[2]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written and composed by Marc Bolan

No. Title Length
1. "Futuristic Dragon (Introduction)"   1:52
2. "Jupiter Liar"   3:40
3. "Chrome Sitar"   3:13
4. "All Alone"   2:48
5. "New York City"   3:55
6. "My Little Baby"   3:06
7. "Calling All Destroyers"   3:53
Side B
No. Title Length
1. "Theme for a Dragon"   2:00
2. "Sensation Boulevard"   3:48
3. "Ride My Wheels"   2:25
4. "Dreamy Lady"   2:51
5. "Dawn Storm"   3:42
6. "Casual Agent"   2:53

Personnel[edit]

Technical

References[edit]

External links[edit]