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ARCHIMEDES BADKAR

Jazz Rock/Fusion • Sweden


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Archimedes Badkar biography
This large ensemble might be seen as a Swedish equivalent of the German group Embryo, as both were pioneers in the fusion of jazz-rock and ethnic music from all over the world. The music of Archimedes Badkar was lively and playful, often inspired by African music from both North and South of the Sahara desert. All four albums are in a similar vein, but most people regard their double second album as their best effort. Half of it was pre-planned, the rest based on improvisations done in the studio at night! Most tracks are very long and indicative of hippies on an Eastern trip. Bado Kidogo (1979) was a collaboration with the group Afro 70 from Tanzania. Bengt Berger and Kjell Westling had previously played with Arbete Och Fritid.


Bio written by D6E Asbjornssen, in his Scented Garden Of The Mind book.

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

3.44 | 12 ratings
Badrock För Barn I Alla Åldrar
1975
3.04 | 4 ratings
II
1976
3.75 | 9 ratings
Tre
1977
3.00 | 1 ratings
Bado Kidogo
1979

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0.00 | 0 ratings
Rumpstek
1973
0.00 | 0 ratings
Kila Mtu
1978

ARCHIMEDES BADKAR Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Bado Kidogo by ARCHIMEDES BADKAR album cover Studio Album, 1979
3.00 | 1 ratings

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Bado Kidogo
Archimedes Badkar Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by DrömmarenAdrian

— First review of this album —
3 stars Archimedes badkar's fourth and final record is a co-operation with the Tanzanian band Afro 70. It was released in 1978 on MNW records. I must say it's quite different music from my point of view. When they earlier played world music I felt it wasn't real. I prefer african music from african bands and opposite and this felt constrained. I don't say you can't get inspiration from very corner of the musical world but for my personal taste it's a part of being original to begin in your motherhood. On this record the world music becomes more real because of the collaboration with Afro 70. It works well but still I am not content, perhaps it's just not my cup of tea. In tea I prefer teas like Sir William, Fortmason or Lapsong Souchong.

Well...This album "Bado Kidogo" contains good work from great musicians. Especially the blow instruments dominates. On track is wonderful; I am talking about the title track "Bado Kidogo" with a wonderful melody in both verses and refrain and great solo from the saxophone players. Also "Kila mtu" shows something of the best here with wonderful song and trumpets. "DarafoDarkpen" is perhaps the most obvious jazz tune here. It's long and seems improvised. i would call it a jazz orgy, so sure it will gain fans, it people would hear it. Though, I don't like it. There are nice vibes from Africa in "Kwa vile Nakupenda", "Nimashaka" and "Leo Harusi" and they show different aspects of our big musical world. But it definitely not does me want to hear it again, so I can in no way give it more than three stars. So this record gives a bit of enjoyment for the moment, but nothing more.

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 Tre by ARCHIMEDES BADKAR album cover Studio Album, 1977
3.75 | 9 ratings

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Tre
Archimedes Badkar Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by DrömmarenAdrian

3 stars Arcimedes badkar was a swedish progg band which started 1972 and made its first record "Badrock för barn i alla åldrar" in the year 1975. The secord lp "Archimedes badkar II" came 1976 and this third and second last came 1977. The musicians on this record are Tommy Adolfsson, Jörgen Adolfsson, Christer Bjernelind, Per Tjernberg, Pysen Eriksson, Peter Ragnarsson, Bengt Berger(who has played with many proggbands like Arbete och fritid, Anita Livstrand, Fickteatern, Pärson sound, Sånger om kvinnor) , Sigge Krantz and Christer Bothén.

I have had this records for some years now but my last listening was a long tid ago. On this record they mixed a lot of styles. You can hear fragments of swedish folk musik but mostly they have taken inspiration from other cultures like India and Africa and the orient. The music on this record has very different qualities. Some tracks are pure good material, especially for those who like jazz and improvisation. "Tzivaeri" is the best track with true beauty, clear instruments and a pure melody. "Slum(Södergatan)" is melancolic and wonderful, the only composition here that feels swedish and authentic. "Bhajan" feels like India and contains also bright and intelligent material. We have two pieces which are trumpet and saxophone driven: "Badidoom" and "Suite: Pharoah ? El Legend ? Marrakech". These tracks have a nice feeling, very talanted blowers and give you harmony especially if you like this form of music, I'm not very sure of that. The worst tracks were "Wildlife", "Akombah" and "Thumb piano music" which I considered meaningsless.

As a conclusion I want to say that I think this is tricky music. I don't think it sounds genuine. I feels like they were confused about their identity and therefore searched in other cultures to find it. This is too much world music because it's hard to find THE Archimeds Badkar sound in it. They should have made more bits like "Slum" and they would have been more interesting. Now it feels like this was a one listening-time record.

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 Tre by ARCHIMEDES BADKAR album cover Studio Album, 1977
3.75 | 9 ratings

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Tre
Archimedes Badkar Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

4 stars This Swedish band was formed by keyboardist Per Tjernberg back in 1972 when he was in grade 8 ! The young lads were influenced by the complex music of Zappa to the Free Jazz stylings of Coltrane / Shepp / Sanders to the minimalistic music of Terry Riley. It was the arrival of Jorgen Adolfsson (a "real musician" as Per puts it) with his knowledge of traditional music from all over the world that their music widened considerably. Jorgen played violin, sax, guitar, flute, mandolin and more.Their real life heroes were the grown-ups in FLASKET BRINNER , TRAD GRAS & STENNAR and Don Cherry who was living in Sweden at the time. The cool thing was that members from these two bands I just mentioned as well as Don Cherry were all members of ARCHIMEDES BADKAR at some point. The early years of this band were very open and free times where just about anyone could get up and play with them and there would be a light show and people extravagantley dressed on stage dancing etc. Perhaps SUN RA was an influence. It wasn't until this third album "Tre" recorded in 1977 that things became more tightly structured. They were a seven piece band at this point including lots of horns (sax, trumpet, clarinet) as well as tablas, mandolin, violin, vibes and more. Certainly Jazz / Fusion is the prominant flavour but we do get those African rhythms and Middle-Eastern stylings.

"Badidoom" is an incredible opener. Lots of percussion and piano as the horns play over top. This is just a joy throughout as they seem to jam. "Wildlife" has nature sounds that fill the air, in fact I feel like i'm somewhere in the middle of the woods. "Akombah" has this collage of intricate sounds. Interesting stuff and there's whistles too. "Bhajaj" as you might guess from the song's title has an Eastern vibe with lots of percussion and tablas. Violin a minute in. "Slum" has piano melodies. Drums and recorder take over. Sax replaces recorder before 2 1/2 minutes.

Thumb Piano" has these intricate sounds throughout. It's kind of cool. "Suite (Pharoah-El Legend-Marrakeck)" is another amazing track just like the opening number. Piano, percussion and more as the horns join in quickly. It's more intense before 2 1/2 minutes. How good is this ! An incredible section right to the end. Screaming sax 4 minutes in and later at 6 minutes. "Desert Band" has percussion,recorder and more as we get an ethnic flavour. "Tzivaeri" has intricate acoustic guitar to open that becomes strummed as gentle recorder and more follow. "Nomads" ends it with an ominous horn melody before the music comes in and builds. I like this a lot.

So an excellent album that will appeal to EMBRYO fans.Easily 4 stars.

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 Tre by ARCHIMEDES BADKAR album cover Studio Album, 1977
3.75 | 9 ratings

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Tre
Archimedes Badkar Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Guldbamsen
Forum & Site Admin Group Site and Forum Admin

4 stars Snowcapped bathtub in the desert

I've been on a Swedish binge lately, and much to my surprise there's almost nothing written about these albums on here. Last time I wrote a bit about organ wizard Eric Malmberg, and now I'd like to proceed this Swedish voyage with a somewhat obscure band called Archimedes Badkar (Archimedes' Bathtub). Their unique take on fusion guides the listener on some amazing carpet rides through the northern parts of Africa. Just like Kebnekaise, Archimedes Badkar incorporated African music into their sound, although I must say that these guys were far more successful.

I've heard many talk about this band as being the Swedish equivalent of Embryo, and this is not far off to tell you the truth. Archimedes Badkar frolic in psychedelia tinged fusion, experimental and freeflowing Krautrock with much emphasis on improvisation - and blend all of this together with a good scoop of African instrumentation.

Trumpet, sax, African drums, piano, violin, mandolin, clarinet, acoustic guitars, recorder, keyboards, tablas, bass, electric guitar and all sorts of exotic percussive features - all of this thrown into one big bowl. And while much of this album comes off as haphazard tunes from the Muppet kitchen - there's still some kind of core - a certain feel of preconception between these musicians. If I were to compare this to anything else, I'd probably say the Bitches Brew guys or the Mwandishi session men - not because they sound alike, but rather because of the total free natured atmosphere, that invites each and everyone to do whatever the hell they want to at any given moment. I realise that I'm painting a picture of crazy music with absolutely no form whatsoever, but that's hardly the fact here. Even when these guy jam, it sounds like it's orchestrated - like there's some meaning behind it all. Take the rhythm sections here for example. They stomp through the music like some harnessed stampede with all these differentiating percussive facets to it - and still there seems to be a togetherness at the front wheel. Even when these take us to the darkest parts of the jungle - and we get wild vocalizations sounding like a bunch of entranced witch doctors, you are never close to losing your mind. Not entirely that is...

One of the things that amazes me the most about this band is that they sound just as comfortable doing the kind of Scandinavian white boy fusion with big mad toots of the wind instruments, as they are making tribal bongo music taken directly from a wild towering bonfire in the midst of the African planes. Part Zulu - part mad Swedes. Then again you'll probably also pick up the Nordic folk music that once in a while pops by to say hello. The violin turns elliptic and slightly skewed - bringing the old myths of Thor and Odin to the fore - yet still backed up by tablas and Eastern sounding strings. This is Archimedes Badkar in a nutshell. They combine all these different cultures and make them sound as if they were one and the same. Like it was some old undiscovered culture with lions and tigers all living in big snowcapped fjords far above the borders of Lappland. With half naked warriors with spears and painted bodies jumping in ecstasy to the power of the music.

There are really no leaders on this album. You'll often get a piano lead groove, enhanced with the echoing wind instruments bellowing out in unison. Then the strings take over, and suddenly you're somewhere completely different, but somehow all these changes feel organic and purposeful - like they were meant to be.

If you like Embryo or any sort of experimental form of fusion, psych mixed with jazzy folk - or just need a different beat - an altogether different style of rhythmically fortified genre-less music that will take you on some wonderful journeys from the highest mountains in the north to the dirt brown and caramel coloured caravans in the winding dunes of the Sahara desert, - then start looking for Archimedes Badkar. I promise you - this bathtub is not like any you've ever stepped into.

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 Badrock För Barn I Alla Åldrar by ARCHIMEDES BADKAR album cover Studio Album, 1975
3.44 | 12 ratings

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Badrock För Barn I Alla Åldrar
Archimedes Badkar Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Dobermensch

3 stars Quite a playful little first album by Archimedes Badkar. An entirely instrumental affair, this is the first of only three albums that they released. 'Badrock' has certain leanings towards 'Embryo' from a few years earlier. Also quite similar but less intrusive than a few other Swedish bands from that era, namely 'Arbete Och Fritid' and the majestic 'Algarnas Tradgard'.

There are a lot of acoustic instruments used in this recording. Trumpets, flutes, violins and cellos, which although initially are slightly irritating, gradually induces you into a state of hypnosis.

The production values aren't the best, with a certain 'tinnyness' present throughout which some listeners may find distracting. It has that particular vibe that Scandinavian bands held at that time. The middle section is very nice and quite dreamy and folky in a mediaeval sort of way.

It's not a bad effort, quite pleasant and jaunty with a fair amount of unusualness but nothing special.

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 Badrock För Barn I Alla Åldrar by ARCHIMEDES BADKAR album cover Studio Album, 1975
3.44 | 12 ratings

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Badrock För Barn I Alla Åldrar
Archimedes Badkar Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Neo Prog Team

3 stars Unknown yet quite original band from Sweden,who blended Free Jazz,Progressive Rock and Folk music.They were formed in 1972 by percussionist/keyboardist Per Tjenberg, soon to be joined by multi-instrumentalist Jonas Adolffson, and playing a style close to FRANK ZAPPA.Their first gigs were quite a shock for the audience,as ARCHIMEDES BADKAR's cast was constantly changing from four up to twenty (!) members,while their lives consisted of dancers,motorcycle bikers and fire-eaters!Label MNW took the risk to sign the band,who released their debut in 1975.

The sound at times is very close to some early-70's German Kraut-Jazz bands like OUT OF FOCUS,KRAAN or EMBRYO,that means innovative Jazz-Rock filled with trumpets and saxes with plenty of improvisational parts.However ARCHIMEDES BADKAR used a lot the acoustic guitars or mandolin,mixed with the sound of vibraphone and a bit of electric piano to create an almost Avant Garde-like atmosphere at times.As Tjenberg was a percussionist,it is reasonable that the sound is dominated by strong doses of percussions here and there,delivering a tribal musicianship with ethnic tendencies.This is actually a very good album,at moments it sounds totally different from what you expect from a Jazz-Rock band...and that is a good thing.

Recommended for explorers of the ''difficult'' and the ''unknown''!

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 Badrock För Barn I Alla Åldrar by ARCHIMEDES BADKAR album cover Studio Album, 1975
3.44 | 12 ratings

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Badrock För Barn I Alla Åldrar
Archimedes Badkar Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Sean Trane
Special Collaborator Prog Folk

4 stars First album of a loose formation (they will never record two albums with the same line-up) that was probably closer to a hippie community that could write some tight songs, but also extended themselves in lengthy jams. Their first album is an excellent example of this as their type of jazz-rock was much laced with ethnic influences that they almost get lost in the confusion and the fusion of their main two musical preoccupations. Their first album received release in 73 with an amusing comic character, probably called Archimedes over a starlit nightsky.

The albums starts on three short songs that can have thinking Samla or Zappa, tight little tunes that are actually far away from each other as possible: the opening Det Stog is Samla-type, Kaumba starts on ethnic percussions before veering folk, while Sweet Loves is a delightful track with plenty of sax works driving you to the heart attack as it is so tense. The rest of the opening side is taken by the superb almost 14-minsWago Goreze, a repetitive but slow-evolving and spell-binding track that starts out on a bass line accompanied with diverse chimes , than entering a slow superb sax that comes from behind and gradually takes the spotlight. This track is somewhat reminiscent of Third Ear Band (first period) or Tery Riley (Rainbow in CA) in its glacial climactic best. It is minimalist and trancelike characteristic has two sax hovering in the heavens while the great ethnic percussion instruments keep flowing on the earthian grounds. Outstanding.

The flipside is made of short pieces (max 5 mins but min 0:27") that are spread ovzer a wide musical spectrum: the short Yelir is double flute thing, while Sempokjens is a delightful dual guitar piece that either Phillips or Hackett could've written. Taxar Springa is a mid-eastern sounding based mostly on the use of an oud and one can't help but refer to the European piece just before it. Most of the tracks on side 2 come linked to each other, no intervals separating them. Mister X is a return to Samla/Zappa- type of song starting full out and ending with a good piano break. The unwriteable Sammansmaltning is a return to the lengthy epic on the first side, although its not quite as repetitive, but just as spellbinding with its dual sax attack. Then comes a delightful 3+mins cover of Trane's ALS, while Jarnet is a wahwah guitar soloing away over a jazz-rock beat. Badande Gurun is a head-spinning fast tune, contrasting heavily with the following Morgonstjarnan, a slow guitar starter slowly evolving in a sax-led crescendo, while the self-explanatory Repris is reprising a previous track.

This first album opens a certain kind of Badkar musical integrity as future albums will be fairly different from each other, but remain completely uncommercial and typically in the AB spirit. But unfortunately for them, they will ever be better than in their debut album, which is the only essential one from them.

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 II by ARCHIMEDES BADKAR album cover Studio Album, 1976
3.04 | 4 ratings

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II
Archimedes Badkar Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Sean Trane
Special Collaborator Prog Folk

3 stars In the wonderful 70's, when a group wanted to release a double album filled to the brim with music, it didn't have to be jam-packed of tight songs, but it could have some loose jams in different moments. AB's second album is a fairly different beast than its debut, much looser, much more ethnic and much less jazzy.The group was reduced to a sextet but numerous other changes and many guests were invited. Under a gatefold artwork showing amateur but inspired pencil drawings and some more "homemade" features giving the album an unprofessional or amateur look, without this becoming a bad thing.

The first disc's opening side seems dedicated to Indian music as both track (amounting to 21 mins+) a much in the Europeans thought they could do it homage as the sitar reigns supreme over harmonium drones. On the flipside there are appears to be some slightly cosmic trends in Jorden, which is slightly odd just preceding the Kelzmer-Gypsy jazz of Charmante Yerevan. The closing lengthy Akreaka II is a slow evolving and enthralling piece, but it ends up too repetitititive.

The second disk starts on Tibetan horns (rightly so as the track is Radio Tibet), but the music evolves much and ends up improvising greatly. Finishing that side is the usual Embryo-sounding Tva Vardlar. The flipside has the gypsy-jazz Jugoslavian Dans, the Indian sitar & tabla music over a flute & piano background, but it's overstaying its welcome by a full two or three minutes. The closing Tva Hundra is a cosmic jam (possibly after an Aurora Borealis, given the electronics tweedlings)

Much less enthralling but at least as adventurous as its forerunner, AB II is not an easy piece to digest, because it tends to fuse different ethnic musical styles together, but ultimately come out only as halfway successful. So while certainly worth a listen, their second album is not really essential and therefore might be only interesting only if you thought their debut superb.

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Thanks to sean trane for the artist addition.

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