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Simon Reynolds - Shock & Awe: Glam Rock And Its Legacy book review

Album Review

Wonderfully weighty study of all that glittered – and no small debt to prog from Simon Reynolds

Though perceived as a reaction against the 60s and for those too young to have caught The Beatles, glam – like punk – wasn’t entirely a year zero concept contrived on a blank slate. Its prime movers had roots within the fertile English underground of freak beat, psychedelia and folk, from which prog rock also grew. It was indeed a fine line between Roxy Music and Jethro Tull. Simon Reynolds delves deep into Marc Bolan’s Tolkien-inspired musical past and explores Bowie’s fickleness as he passed through Anthony Newley-esque pop, mime and bands called things like Turquoise and Feathers – a restlessness observed today as his strength but in 1970 regarded as a weakness.


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