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Budgie - Bandolier CD (album) cover




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3.30 | 137 ratings

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Easy Livin
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
2 stars In need of Trill

Recorded in 1975, "Bandolier" offered the first indications that the inspiration was starting to become harder to find for Budgie. The album as whole remains a solid, guitar driven affair, but there is an underlying feel of going through the motions to a number of the tracks. By this time, the Spinal Tap like challenge of retaining a drummer was becoming a feature of the line up, with "Syco" Steve Williams taking over from Pete Boot (who had lasted for just one album).

The opening "Breaking all the house rules" is an enjoyable but rather anonymous rock and roll number which does not seek to break out of its all too orthodox framework. "Slip away" is the album's now traditional soft acoustic number, the song being rather longer than previous such tracks, perhaps an indication of the band's struggle to come up with new material. "Who do you want for your love" sounds more like a Bad Company song that a Budgie one, the shuffling blues being over-lyrical and rather prosaic.

The second side of the album is somewhat brief, but does end on a high. "I can't see my feelings", which opens the side, is another Wishbone Ash like blues rock song with little to distinguish it from the many other such numbers recorded around the same time. "I ain't no mountain" is a decent cover version of an Andy Fairweather-Lowe (Amen Corner) song, which sees the band venturing into significantly more commercial territories than they would have explored on earlier albums. The two part Napoleon Bona Part 1 & 2 (Bonaparte, get it?) which closes the album is by far the best track here. It sets out as a gentle acoustic number before bursting forth as a driving rock anthem featuring some fine lead guitar soloing. The underlying riff is similar to that on Led Zeppelin's "Immigrant song", the atmosphere of the track being similarly appealing.

In all, a rather disappointing entry in the Budgie discography, but an album which is certainly worthy of investigation for its fine closing song.

Easy Livin | 2/5 |


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