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BADGER

Heavy Prog • United Kingdom


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As Peter BANKS was ousted from YES to make place for Steve HOWE, Tony KAYE managed to produce his best effort yet in their following album the YES album but also got the boot to be replaced by Rick WAKEMAN.

As a natural reflex, KAYE and BANKS regrouped and founded FLASH that would record three albums. But, obviously KAYE was not happy with the result and left before the second album to create BADGER with drummer Roy DYKE ex-ASHTON, GARDNER and DYKE - sounds like a law firm but so does ELP - a band worth investigating also. BADGER recorded their first album live (probably cheaper way to make an album) and developed an energetic prog reminding us of YES along with the obligatory Roger Dean art cover. By their second album, only KAYE and DYKE were left and the were joined by pop-soul singer Jackie Lomax for a very confused album where Jeff beck makes a guest appearance and the band folded.

Tony KAYE, who had been ousted from YES was re-invited into the group for the 80's and part of the 90's.

: : : Hugues Chantraine, BELGIUM : : :

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One Live BadgerOne Live Badger
Import
Voiceprint UK 2008
Audio CD$10.12
$28.95 (used)
One Live BadgerOne Live Badger
Import
Wea 1993
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Time Will TellTime Will Tell
CD Baby 2014
Audio CD$13.32
$13.31 (used)
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BADGER discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

BADGER top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

1.61 | 20 ratings
White Lady
1974

BADGER Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.35 | 69 ratings
One Live Badger
1973

BADGER Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

BADGER Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

BADGER Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

0.00 | 0 ratings
White Lady
1974

BADGER Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 White Lady by BADGER album cover Studio Album, 1974
1.61 | 20 ratings

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White Lady
Badger Heavy Prog

Review by Guillermo
Prog Reviewer

2 stars In late 1993, I bought Jackie Lomax`s first solo album from 1969 called "Is This What You Want?" (which was produced by George Harrison and released by Apple Records). I found it in a supermarket in the records section being sold at a very cheap price with also other albums by other artists from the Apple Records label (Mary Hopkin, Billy Preston, Badfinger, James Taylor, etc.) that were re-issued in 1991 on CD with bonus tracks. In fact the price was so cheap that I bought some of these Apple Records` CDs from these artists. I had the curiosity to listen to Lomax`s album because it was produced by Harrison and also because it has two tracks recorded with an all- star line-up (with three Beatles: Harrison, Ringo Starr and Paul McCartney; Eric Clapton; Nicky Hopkins) and with one song composed by Harrison. Lomax was a friend from The Beatles and he was also managed briefly as a soloist by Brian Epstein, and when Epstein died and The Beatles founded Apple Records in 1968, Lomax was given then a recording contract with the label. He recorded only one album for Apple Records and several singles, all of which unfortunately for him were not very successful. He later recorded other 4 solo albums for other record labels during the seventies and a final solo album in 2004, without having much success, before his death in 2013. His only solo album for Apple Records is a mixture of Rock songs, Ballads, Pop Rock music from the sixties, with some psychedelic influences, and also with some Rhythm and Blues, Soul and Motown music influences. He was a good singer and composer.

BADGER`s first album ("One Live Badger", released in 1973) was recorded live in December 1972 and was produced by Jon Anderson. That first album is a good Prog Rock album well played and produced. But unfortunately that album was unsuccessful. I don`t know the full details, but for this second album from BADGER called "White Lady" from 1974, only keyboard player Tony Kaye and drummer Roy Dyke remained from their first line-up and their first album. The band also changed record label, and had Jackie Lomax as their new lead singer and rhythm guitarist, plus new bassist Kim Gardner and new lead guitarist Paul Pilnick . This, their second album, was produced by Allen Toussaint, who also plays some congas, piano and organ on some tracks. There is also a horns section added to most songs. The band also changed their original Prog Rock style to a new style which is a mixture of Rhythm and Blues, Soul, Rock Pop music, with even some Funky influences. With Lomax being the composer of all the songs in this album, it is not really unexpected that the songs sound influenced a lot from his work as soloist. It really sounds like BADGER became a vehicle for Lomax as a composer and singer, not really sounding very different from his first solo album (which is the only one album that I have listened from him as soloist), but with only updating his songwriting in sound for the commercial music of the mid-seventies. Jeff Beck plays a guitar solo on the title track, doing a good job. There are also some female backing vocals in some songs. The songs all sound in a similar style. As a whole the album is not bad. But this album is not a Prog Rock album. The musicians are good and they did a very professional job. Tony Kaye`s keyboard playing is good, adding some good organ and mellotron parts, but in some songs his keyboards really sound distant and more in the background. With this album, it seems that the BADGER`s band name was only used to give a commercial connection to a previous band with the same name and with a previous album in the market, but this new line-up really sounds very far from the original Prog Rock style the band had in their first album. There is not a real connection between both albums and line-ups apart from having Kaye and Dyke. Maybe they should have changed the name of the band for this second album. Maybe this album was even more unsuccessful than their first, so they did not record another album. Kaye later formed a new band in the mid- seventies called DETECTIVE which recorded three albums for LED ZEPPELIN`s Swan Song records label, with a more Hard Rock musical style, before they split in the late seventies, also without having much success.

A curious thing: apart from playing with Jackie Lomax in BADGER, Tony Kaye also played with another Apple Records` former band called Badfinger. But it was with a reformed Badfinger, playing with them between 1979 and 1981, and in fact recording with them their last album as a band called "Say No More", which was released in 1981. In 1983, while recording the "90125" album with YES, Kaye left YES for some months due to some problems with producer Trevor Horn and re-joined Badfinger for their last months as a band, returning to YES when he was asked to do it in late 1983. Kaye also played with Alan White in YES, a drummer who also had connections with The Beatles thanks to his work with John Lennon and George Harrison in some of their solo albums.

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 One Live Badger by BADGER album cover Live, 1973
3.35 | 69 ratings

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One Live Badger
Badger Heavy Prog

Review by GruvanDahlman
Prog Reviewer

3 stars The early 70's gave birth to a myriad of prog bands. Some bands grew to stadium acts while others lingered in obscurity. One such group was Badger. Funny enough, Kaye used to be a part of Yes, a band that really grew to immense stature and set the example for many musical aspirations for years and years to come. Still do, even. Badger, on the other hand, failed to make a lasting impression and left only two albums to their name. The first one was the live album "One live Badger" and the other a lacklustre affair called "White lady".

I love "One live Badger". I always have and will continue to do so for the rest of my life, I suppose. The cover is one of those that really intrigues me. Simple yet very beautiful, the badgers on the front seems to hook up just outside their hole in the ground. It is a friendly cover and I think it is one of prog's greater.

The music is a keyboard driven heavy type of prog. Being a live album it is very well recorded and performed. Every instrument and intricate piece of the music can be clearly heard, even though the music sometimes seems quite raw and intense. There is a clear focus on hard rock making this a hard hitting yet varied slab of prog with great sections of solo parts from both guitar and keyboards.

The songs are really similiar in length, around 7 minutes each, apart from "The preacher" which is the least interesting of the songs. "The river" is not one of the better either. Apart from those two the material is really solid and well written pieces of music with good lyrics.

The opening trio of songs are all very fine and I enjoy them very much. There is not much in ways of epics, prog's most loved expression. It is more in the way of hard rock with prog tendencies, like a Deep Purple less frantic in execution. There is no "Speed King" or "Into the fire", more like their more mellow and mid paced numbers. There is, however, a very potent and clear streak of progressive leanings.

The best track is "On the way home", which holds such a heavy opening with the organ leading the riff alongside guitar. The vocals are very emotional and heartfelt and the instrumentation is superb. I love this track and have always enjoyed it every time I hear it. The soaring guitar at 1.30 is lovely. At 3.30 there is some really nice organ fills as well, followed by a really frantic organ solo at 4.30. Really the best and most engaging of the six tracks.

The end result, though, is an album that really does not manage to uphold my interest all the way through. I skip "The preacher" and "The river", leaving me with only four songs. Now, the ones I skip aren't really worthless but I think they disrupt the flow and they are not as thrilling as the other songs. While "On the way home" is as close to a 5-star rating as it gets and the first three gets 4, the skipped ones are simply OK and that is not enough.

So, even though I love and cherish this strange album (not many bands would go about releasing a live album as their first testament) the end result is an okay album. There is plenty to thrill but in the end it is an album of varied quality, in the vein of early 70's hardrock with a splash of progressive tendencies. Do not travel around the globe in pursuit but do give it a listen, if you can. It is charming and at times really, really good (such as in "On the way home").

Three stars from me and a lot of love.

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 One Live Badger by BADGER album cover Live, 1973
3.35 | 69 ratings

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One Live Badger
Badger Heavy Prog

Review by ghost_of_morphy
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Some comets fade from view. Some roses wither on the vine. Some straights get trumped by a full house. That pretty much describes Badger, a heavy prog project that made it out of the gate in good time but stumbled early.

If you have heard of Badger, you probably came to them in one of two ways.

1. You saw Roger Dean's striking cover art in the record store and bought this album on that basis. 2. You were exploring the amazing amount of projects that ex-Yes members were involved in and followed Tony Kaye to this album from Flash.

So to mention the hoary chestnuts about this album first. Yes, Kaye helped form this group after leaving Flash (which was probably not entirely his own idea, btw.) Yes, this was recorded live, with the same equipment and at more or less the same time that Yes recorded Yessongs. Strikingly, this album actually has a bit better sound quality.

So what does the music soumd like? 'it is most definitely heavy prog belonging to it's era (the early 70's.) Looking at the other reviews on here, i saw two comparisons that seemed cogent to me. The first was to Manfred Mann's Earth Band. While there are not that many similarities to their more progressive stuff, i could definitely hear Badger covering a rocker like Davey's on the Road Again. The other comparison was to Traffic, which is fairly close and which I wish I could claim I had thought of.

For me though, when I think of Badger's sound I think of two more obscure groups, T2 and Fantasy (which is somehow categorized as symophonic here.) These are not earth-shattering, revolutionary bands, but then neither is Badger. The first album is fun though. Live, energetic and interesting it is. I'll give it three stars because it is likeable even though there are many better things worth searching out.

Don't waste your time with Badger's other release, White Lady. This is the one to get.

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 One Live Badger by BADGER album cover Live, 1973
3.35 | 69 ratings

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One Live Badger
Badger Heavy Prog

Review by Guillermo
Prog Reviewer

4 stars This album was recorded in December 1972 at the Rainbow Theatre, London, during a concert on which BADGER supported YES, in one of the concerts which YES recorded for their "Yessongs" album and for their film of the same name. It was also co-produced by BADGER, Jon Anderson, and Geoff Haslam, who also was the recording engineer of the "Yessongs" album. But, curiously, for my ears this live album by BADGER sounds better recorded and mixed than "Yessongs". Particularly the sound of the drums is more clear and better than in "Yessongs". Maybe it also had to be with the different tunings of the drum kits. Roy Dyke`s drum kit sounds better than Alan White`s , particularly in the sound of the snare drum.

BADGER was a band that Tony Kaye, as he has explained in several interviews, formed after he left YES. He was writing songs with David Foster, a former member of THE WARRIORS with Jon Anderson in the mid sixties. Anderson and Foster also wrote some songs, two of which appeared on YES`s second album titled "Time and a Word" in 1970. Apparently Foster also participated uncredited in that album playing a bit of acoustic guitar and singing some backing vocals on the title track (a thing which Peter Banks, YES`s then guitarist, said in one interview that he did not like it very much). Anyway, Kaye and Foster became friends and started writing songs together. By late July 1971, Kaye left YES and formed BADGER with Foster. Kaye was invited by Banks to become FLASH`s keyboard player (a thing which also their record label and producer wanted), but as Kaye was working with BADGER Kaye only appeared on FLASH`s self-titled album as guest (with his name appearing on the credits in that album with "appears by courtesy of Atlantic Records" a thing that maybe indicated that he was signed with that record label with BADGER for a planned album).

BADGER recorded this debut album in a very atypical way, because this is a live album. They maybe had the support from Jon Anderson, who co-produced the album, and maybe from other sections of YES related personnel, because the cover was designed by Roger Dean.

The album has very good songs, which now unfortuately sound a bit dated. The musical style of the songs are a mixture of Hard Rock, Progressive Rock, Soul Music and Rhythm and Blues. The musical style of the band sounds to me with some similarities with NEKTAR, PALADIN and URIAH HEEP. There are even some Christian Rock influences in the lyrics for the last song titled "On the Way Home". The vocals are good, but it is clear that none of the singers (Foster and Parrish) were more musicians than full time lead singers. As a whole the band sounds very well rehearsed, giving a very good performance as a band and as individual musicians. Tony Kaye shines on keyboards with the use of organ, piano, mellotron and synthesiser, even playing very good solos (a thing which now seems to me that in YES he never had full freedom to do ).His keyboards interact very well with the guitar arrangements.

In my opinion, the best songs in this album are "River", "The Preacher" and "On The Way Home", with the first two that I mentioned having very good Prog Rock arrangements. All the songs in this album were credited as written by BADGER, except "The Preacher" which was only credited to Parrish. As a whole the band sounds as a more balanced band, with all the musicians having a more equal role than in other bands like YES. In my opinion, on which the guitar has a more prominent role. Kaye sounds in this album like playing with more enthusiasm, more confidence and maybe feeling more happy than with YES. It was more his own project, after all.

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 One Live Badger by BADGER album cover Live, 1973
3.35 | 69 ratings

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One Live Badger
Badger Heavy Prog

Review by maryes

3 stars After his meteroric passage in Peter Bank's FLASH ( only in Flash's first albun, with a very discreet performance ) , the keyboardist Tony Kaye be formed BADGER and releases only two works White Lady (studio albun) and this live albun One Live Badger. The band's sonority is very close to a mix of GRANDFUNK RAILROAD and NEKTAR. At this time Kaye's performance is more prominent and incorporate other types of keyboards, such moog aside to their tradional hammond organ and eletric & acoustic pianos. Although, the band not reachs the same quality of their olds bands, presents some very interesting moments like in the track 3 - "Wind of Change" with a captivating melody and a hammond solo in Jon Lord's style, and the track 6 - " On the Way Home" with another great Kaye's hammond solo. My rate is 3 stars !!!

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 One Live Badger by BADGER album cover Live, 1973
3.35 | 69 ratings

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One Live Badger
Badger Heavy Prog

Review by Vibrationbaby

3 stars One Live Badger was one of the many albums that emerged from the early seventies art rock effusion that owed a lot to the creative talents of Roger Dean. In the early seventies his sureal concepts and paintings began to adorn the covers of albums such as Uriah Heep's Demons & Wizards and Fragile by Yes where the music contained as much allure as Dean's canvasses. Unfortunately this is not the case here despite some lively moments from ex-Yesman Tony Kaye's keyboards interacting with Brian Parrish's respectable rhythm and lead guitar licks. The association between these 6 enlogated Three Dog Night meets Grand Funk Railroad spiritual rave-ups and the hyperboreal image of two ( rather cute ) little Badgers weathering out a storm has always eluded me. Don't get me wrong, it's not a bad record and the live enviroment certainly compliments the energy and spontaneity of the pieces which get into some cool jamming moments but it lacks the substance ( unless you want to consider the religious overtones in the lyrics ) that you would expect from an album embelished with Roger Dean artwork. Original vinyl editions had a pop-up badger which confused things even more. But at the time I guess kids were just thrilled with the novelty of having a record with a Roger Dean cover.

Invariably, someone who picks the CD edition up for the first time in 2010 will be overcome by the Dean artwork and will be further thrown off by the knowledge that Tony Kaye was the original keyboard player for prog leviathans Yes and swayed further still by the fact that it was produced by Yes guru man Jon Anderson. The best preparation for this anamoly would be to forget about the two cuddly badgers and think of the album as an extension of Yes' 1970 album Time And A Word when they were still in a sixties groove. Things started to get too serious on the subsequent Yes Album after which Kaye was given his pink slip and One Live Badger sort of de-mystifies at least some musical reasons for this departure with it's bluesy, upbeat and sometimes funky compositions .

Not a monumental catastrophe by a long shot but an album that will come under scrutiny by hard core fans of Yes music with Roger Dean covers from the same period. Proceed with caution and beware of badgers.

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 White Lady by BADGER album cover Studio Album, 1974
1.61 | 20 ratings

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White Lady
Badger Heavy Prog

Review by ZowieZiggy
Prog Reviewer

1 stars I witnessed a ''Badger'' concert in '73 (they were opening for one of the first ever Purple Mark III concert in Brussels I think). Since memory doesn't serve me at all to remember this event, I relied on their good live album to figure out what it could have been.

Needless to say that this one has nothing to do with it. Even if some soul influence could already be identified during their live album, this one is just a long trip into the Motown mood. Brass, syrupy vocals, weak melodies etc.

Of prog, there isn't a trace. Of good music, very little I'm afraid. To point out one outstanding song from this set is like to look for a miracle. But it never comes of course. I guess that the best advice is to stay far away from this very weak album.

There is no need to have a track by track review since each of them holds the same ''delightful'' sound. A long ''press next'' exercise from ''A Dream Of You '' (the opener) to ''The Whole Thing'' (the closing number). Pure soul music with no feeling at all.

Since I can't really find one single track worth mentioning, there are no reason to rate this album higher than with one solid star.

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 One Live Badger by BADGER album cover Live, 1973
3.35 | 69 ratings

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One Live Badger
Badger Heavy Prog

Review by Valdez

1 stars I was digging through my old LP's of which I have, (no kidding) Thousands, and came across ONE LIVE BADGER and decided to give it a spin. The first thing I realized was that this was not a prog band but more a bar band or a backyard party jam band... there is nothing prog about this album except for Tony kaye and his long organ solos and the Roger Dean artwork. Produced by Jon Anderson of YES and engineered by the great Martin Rushent, I suppose there were high hopes for this LIVE debut album.

I somewhat enjoyed the first track Wheel of Fortune as I would enjoy a Blood sweat & tears track... It has that David Clayton Thomas feel going on with the vocals and this Brian Parrish was a pretty cool guitarist that could light it up when neccessary, but somewhat cliche in his approach... Bar band, but a fairly good one!

I also enjoyed the second track that had an Ian Hunter/Bowie feel to the vocals, and the refrain (Smile on my face) sounded just like the Grateful dead. The lead guitar on this track is the high point of the record and so are Tony Kayes organ solos. (every song on the album has one of each). Track 3, Wind of change, is about cliche as a Budweiser at a ballgame.

Track 4, The River, is a blues cum jam track that bored me to tears.

The album falls apart after that and dives headlong into a religious gospel type vibe that is very reminiscent of BS&T's again, (Here comes the devil!). This album is only a keeper for it's collectible factor on ATCO SD7022 Released in 1973, and also for Roger dean art completists. Praise the lord and pass the potato chips... I have the gatefold.

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 White Lady by BADGER album cover Studio Album, 1974
1.61 | 20 ratings

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White Lady
Badger Heavy Prog

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

1 stars After the promising start with One Live Badger, comes this dud. Really disappointing in every aspect. Only Kaye and drummer Roy Dyke remanined from the original line up. But the biggest change was in style: what once was prog influenced hard rock now is pure soul pop. And, unfortunatly even for the fans of that style of music, not a very good one. Not realy bad either but everything in this album reeks of commercialism, trying to reach the pop market of the time, when soul music was pretty much popular and fashionable.

The production of course is spotless. The musicians are superb (Jeff Beck and Allen Toussaint are among the many stars guesting on this record). And Jackie Lomax has a fine soul voice to match. And yet everything here sounds a bit forced and without much conviction. Tony Kaye´s playing is totally undistinguished through the whole LP. I can´t recommend this album to anyone but soul-pop-funk fans. Even Yes completionists will have a hard time trying to figure out what Kaye´s doing here. Thank God there was no follow up. 1,5 stars.

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 One Live Badger by BADGER album cover Live, 1973
3.35 | 69 ratings

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One Live Badger
Badger Heavy Prog

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Interesting album from ex original Yes keyboards man Tony Kaye. It was recorded live and showed a lot of potential. The music is quite different from Yes, though. It´s harder, simpler but very tasteful and solid. Great keyboards runs (of course) and some fine guitar licks and solos all over. Vocals are average to good. I´d like to hear them on the studio, but this line up broke up soon after this LP and their next (and last) release would be the disastrous White Lady.

Well, the production is only adequate, but acceptable for a live record. Highlights are the opening song, Wheel Of Fortune (it could have been a hit a the time, if it was given a little airplay) and the closing number On The Way Home (their most progressive). The remaining tracks are good, but not much. A promising start that was not fullfilled. But if you´re into good rock with some prog unfluences and fine keyboards, you should give this a listen. 3,5 stars.

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