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PROPHETS, SEERS & SAGES - THE ANGELS OF THE AGES

Tyrannosaurus Rex (not T. Rex)

Prog Folk


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Tyrannosaurus Rex (not T. Rex) Prophets, Seers & Sages - The Angels of the Ages album cover
2.97 | 15 ratings | 3 reviews | 0% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 1968

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Deboraarobed (3:33)
2. Stacey Grove (1:59)
3. Wind Quartets (2:57)
4. Conesuela (2:25)
5. Trelawney Lawn (1:46)
6. Aznageel the Mage (1:59)
7. The Friends (1:19)
8. Salamanda Palaganda (2:15)
9. Our Wonderful Brownskin Man (0:51)
10. Oh Harley (The Saltimbanques) (2:19)
11. Eastern Spell (1:41)
12. The Travelling Tragition (1:48)
13. Juniper Suction (1:13)
14. Scenes of Dynasty (4:07)

Total time: 30:12

Lyrics

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Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians

- Marc Bolan / vocals, guitars
- Steve Peregrin Took / bongos, African drums, kazoo, pixie phone, Chinese gong

Releases information

CD Disky CUCD-10-TR (1994) EU
LP Sierra FEDB-5022 UK

Thanks to clemofnazareth for the addition
and to NotAProghead for the last updates
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TYRANNOSAURUS REX (NOT T. REX) Prophets, Seers & Sages - The Angels of the Ages ratings distribution


2.97
(15 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(0%)
0%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(20%)
20%
Good, but non-essential (53%)
53%
Collectors/fans only (20%)
20%
Poor. Only for completionists (7%)
7%

TYRANNOSAURUS REX (NOT T. REX) Prophets, Seers & Sages - The Angels of the Ages reviews


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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by ClemofNazareth
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Prog Folk Researcher
3 stars Steve Peregrine Took plays wailing bongos, djembe (which he just calls an ‘African drum’), a toy xylophone known as the Pixiphone, and wears a full-length cape on the cover. And Marc Bolan wrote all the songs. That should pretty much paint a clear picture of what this album is all about.

Listening to this album in the 21st century I’m struck by how odd Bolan’s voice sounds. He’s kind of nasally, not particularly well-articulated and a bit wavering at times. Funny I never noticed that about him when I was a kid and he was inventing glam along with Bowie, Bryan Ferry and Freddie.

But this isn’t glam of course, it’s very much acid folk in its purest form. Like the other Tyrannosaurus Rex albums this one consists of several very short songs, with all but two in the 1-2 minute range. And like much of what Bolan wrote in his early career these mostly sound like incomplete thoughts, which tends to give the album the feel of a sampler rather than a cohesive work. Don’t get me wrong – I like this record and find most of what Bolan did prior to glittering up more interesting than what came later. But of the four pre-T. Rex folk albums this is the one I find the least impressive.

The opening “Deboraarobed” is promising and one of only two songs I think Bolan actually developed to a logical conclusion (the other being the closing “Scenes of Dynasty”, which may be the best pre-T. Rex song in his catalog). Anyway, Took is an absolute madman on bongos and Bolan is in-tune and alert, although the lyrics are more of a word-play than anything else. It’s an energetic song though, and a great example of a style of acid folk that I think was underappreciated back in the day. I was pretty young at the time, but looking back I get the impression these guys were a little bit of a novelty act for stoners and other free thinkers, but overall their music ages relatively well as period pieces from a simpler time.

There really aren’t many songs here worth highlighting; if you’ve heard the other Tyrannosaurus Rex albums that were released just prior to and just after this one you get the idea. Their fourth and final release ‘A Beard of Stars’ on the other hand, released after Took was fired from the band, debuts T. Rex percussionist Micky Finn as well as electric guitar for the first time.

A few I will mention though, including “Salamanda Palaganda” which is a great example of the odd falsetto vocal harmonic style Bolan would employ in his T. Rex and even later solo material (in this case delivered by Took). “Our Wonderful Brownskin Man” gets a mention simply for the notable title. And “O Harley (The Saltimbaques)” is one of my favorite Bolan songs for no other reason than I really like the rhythmic groove he and Took get going with Took slapping the bongo skins and chanting the “O Harley” refrain to Bolan’s own wordless chanting. The abrupt ending is a bit annoying though.

And the closing “Scenes of Dynasty” gets a mention as well, since as I noted before this is one of the two songs that seem to have been fully realized by Bolan. Took’s percussion consists of wood blocks or something similar (I’m not really sure, but that’s what it sounds like) and an occasional harmonic grunt. Bolan is (as always) difficult to follow as he sings another of his strange world-view poems, but I can make out the occasional reference to “peace” and “justice” and something about skinning a jaguar, so it is authentic Bolan. I just like the song because Bolan opens and closes it with some sense of conscious planning, and everything in the middle fits together.

The guy was brilliant, but often erratic and seemed to lose focus or interest in some projects before they were finished, which led to many songs that would get going just enough to pull you in, but then vanish abruptly. This album has a few of those, but is overall pretty decent. Not a masterpiece, and I would probably choose ‘Unicorn’ to point folks to who are interested in this band’s sound. But if you get that one out of the way and are still interested, this one would make a logical follow-on. Three stars.

peace

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Send comments to ClemofNazareth (BETA) | Report this review (#261068) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, January 16, 2010

Review by Warthur
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Bolan and Took open this one with Deboraarobed, a song which goes into reverse in the middle so the second half is the first half played backwards. Although it begins with such a declaration of their willingness to experiment, the album by and large presents a refined and tightened up version of their sound from their debut. That said, there's definite instrumental improvement on both players' accounts - Steve Took, in particular, seems to be playing his percussion instruments purposefully as opposed to just noodling - and they manage to pack sufficient surprises and unexpected twists into sub-two minute songs such as Stacey Grove to keep things interesting. The expanded range of percussion instruments utilised by Cook is a particular help in broadening and diversifying the sound and making the best of the group's increased confidence. The weak point at this point is Bolan's vocals - it's not that he isn't a bad singer, he was great throughout his entire career, but the recording quality slurs his words and makes his hippy-dippy lyrics hard to even recognise, let alone actually understand. Like the last one, pleasant but not compelling.

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Send comments to Warthur (BETA) | Report this review (#450639) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, May 21, 2011

Latest members reviews

3 stars Prophets, Seers, and Sages ? 1968 10 ? Best Song: It's return of the mystical gout. I meant to say goat. Goatboy likes hur hur hur. I'd like to call this sophomore record a transitional one, but it doesn't transition from or to anything at all. Well, it's all the same, generally ? these sp ... (read more)

Report this review (#459123) | Posted by Alitare | Saturday, June 11, 2011 | Review Permanlink

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