Angelheaded Hipster: The Songs of Marc Bolan & T. Rex is an interesting look at one of music’s most simultaneously iconic and overlooked musicians. Part behind the scenes documentary, part biography, the film looks at Bolan’s career through the eyes of the artists that contributed to the tribute album of the same name. It serves as a reminder to his talent and an introduction to those unfamiliar with him.
Instead of a straightforward telling of his tragically short life, the documentary concentrates on Bolan’s music. Angelheaded Hipster uses archival footage of T. Rex performances along with studio recordings from the 2020 album. It is fascinating to hear what singers like Elton John, Nick Cave, and Joan Jett think of Bolan as a lyricist.
Unsurprisingly, David Bowie is a big part of Angelheaded Hipster. The two met when they were young and there are a lot of parallels between the two careers. There is an amusing clip of the two playing on Bolan’s show Marc that fans should get a kick out of. In a bit of a reversal from similar films,, the life and career of Bolan are almost a backdrop to the music. It is a wise choice that fits into the style and image of the singer-songwriter. For audiences, it is a refreshing change.
When it comes to documentaries about musicians, the big question is will it be able to entertain non fans? Angelheaded Hipster: The Songs of Marc Bolan & T. Rex is an entertaining watch that even those who have never heard of T. Rex. His original songs still hold up today while the covers are impressive.
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