“Telegram Sam” is a fuzzier, thicker, lazier take on “Get It On”, a stomp round increasingly familiar territory. The dashed-off catalogue of grotesques in the verses are time-fillers to get the song from one beefy hook to the next, with the hollering chorus taking most of the strain. The band’s four number ones tell a story of a group turning up the volume and playing with the balance between groove and hook, and “Telegram Sam” is the weakest, a transitional stage before the pure muscle of “Metal Guru”. Of course it’s still good pop – Bolan may be on nonsense autopilot but he’s still charismatic, still thrilled by his own stardom: “I’m a howlin’ wolf, woooo” he laughs as he neonizes the blues.

Score: 6

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