I am somewhat conflicted about this series of posthumous releases. Years ago, I became obsessed with all things glam rock and spent a lot of money tracking down all of these CDS. In the time since, I have resold them and know which handful of songs from them I like to re-listen to (digitally).
I acknowledge that I am a bit fanatical of a completist. I am happy when I can get everyhting of an artist I am into. The whole picture means a lot to me. Many times, it is a deep cut that turns out to be my favoriet, rather than the ‘hit single’. Objectively, many unreleased archival releases cynically scrape the bottom of the barrel for anything with a fanbase that will sell, often regardless of quality or the intent/integrity of the artist. In order to draw a personal line of how far your own fandom goes, you have to justify the effort (be it monitary or time) spent consuming the media in question.
Unchained is 8 CDs, 184 songs, and almost 8 hours long. When I was collecting them, they were out of print and second-hand, ranged from around $5-30. There are many songs represented with multiple takes, some more different/complete than others.
This particular entry is one part of the prolific glam heyday year of 1973’s outtakes. Some are excellent “Dance in The Midnight” and compete with Bolan’s best. Others are fragmentary with noodling that are easly dismissed. None are bad, and on average the album is both a cohesive and merrits repeated listens.
With all the aforementioned stipulations, I recommend this album. Strongly if you are a big fan of glam/T.Rex, but guardedly if my breakdown seemed overthought or you don’t make it through one of his ‘best-of’ CDs.