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BAD ALCHEMY

Eclectic Prog • United States


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Bad Alchemy biography
Textural, melodic, emotional musical movements... BAD ALCHEMY harkens back to the days of "Old School" Progressive rock (with new sounds and technology). A time when it was important for a band to not sound homogenized and use every shred of their creative knowledge and abilities eg: King Crimson, Yes, Genesis, Happy The Man, Gong, Hatfield & The North, Gentle Giant and the list goes on.

After years of working together in both original and cover bands in South Florida ( some which met with local notoriety, some which didn't), Glen Mineau (guitar, bass, vocals, keyboards) and Jay Cohen (drums, percussion, vocals and keyboards), decided that it was time to get serious and put out something musically of value, of meaning and of depth. The time was ripe when Glen moved to North Carolina and Jay followed a year later. Spirits were high and momentum was in full swing but they knew they couldn't pull it off as a duo and were fortunate enough to find Kevin Cosgrove (keyboards) who had a similar, past drifting in and out of cover and original bands. The chemistry proved positive and, with some help from Jessie Lynn and Dave Condra, Bad Alchemy was born and have created a musical observation of the human psyche, Rorschach's Conundrum, created over the past 2 years.

:::official biography, provided by Glen Mileau:::

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BAD ALCHEMY discography


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

3.51 | 19 ratings
Rorschach's Conundrum
2009
3.00 | 2 ratings
Pavlov's Other Dog
2015

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BAD ALCHEMY Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Rorschach's Conundrum by BAD ALCHEMY album cover Studio Album, 2009
3.51 | 19 ratings

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Rorschach's Conundrum
Bad Alchemy Eclectic Prog

Review by Beautiful Scarlet

3 stars Bad Alchemy debuts with an album tinged with modern progressive rock touches like the female vocals and some of the guitar soloes and Canterbury Scene. The work is undoubtedly influenced/inspired by Hatfield and The North with one tune being a reference to a H&N song that was released on The Rotters Club remaster.

Prelude to Pandemonium is just a little opener.

The Wooden Box starts with female vocals then adds guitar arpeggios/male vocals then rolls with that for some time. Eventually, the song patters out with some light percussion sounds and quiet muttering vocals then some more singing plus marimba. Closing the song is some ambience.

Track three starts like track one but doesn't end after one minute. Rather you get piano and somewhat deep male vocals. This is subsumed by a different vocal section. Classical esque instrumental happens then some earlier singing returns. The song just kind of ends after this, never building up to anything in its 8 minutes.

The next three tracks are a suite that sound like something that could have been condensed into 3~ minutes and used as an interlude, not an eight minute long song.

The last two songs are like track 2/3 but more Canterbury Sceneish due to the male singer presenting what seems to be a light British accent.

Overall this is a pretty mediocre album in my opinion that is outdone by their following album. If one wishes to try Bad Alchemy I wouldn't recommend this one first. Finally one of my biggest issues with this band is their songs sound like someone butchered them in editing, removing whole tracks because each section has a very thin instrumentation. When one instrument enters another is taken out which frankly gets predictable and annoying as nothing is properly developed. There is also a strong spacey vibe due to the frequent appearance of sections with pretty much nothing happening. It's not bad but it certainly isn't good.

 Pavlov's Other Dog by BAD ALCHEMY album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.00 | 2 ratings

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Pavlov's Other Dog
Bad Alchemy Eclectic Prog

Review by Beautiful Scarlet

3 stars Solid American Hatfield And The North.

These fellas sound like their British predecessors so much. From the male/female vocals to the guitar and scatting. There are six songs on this album, a good instrumental opener driven by fret less bass and some nice vibraphone introduction. The second track has vocals and is okay. The instrumentation feels sparse, like not much is happening. The third track is instrumental and the fourth is a short but sweet acoustic ballad. The final two tracks contain the female vocalist on lead which does not suit the type of music and do not move me 1 inch.

The album is okay, pretty derivative/average. My favourite songs are the opener and track four. My least favourite are the last two.

 Rorschach's Conundrum by BAD ALCHEMY album cover Studio Album, 2009
3.51 | 19 ratings

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Rorschach's Conundrum
Bad Alchemy Eclectic Prog

Review by feodoric

4 stars A rarity on the modern American prog scene: an authentic Canterbury prog album with more than a passing resemblance with Hatfield and the North. The similarities of the music and vocals to Hatfield & The North are so uncanny, that one is led to ask whether the album is a mere clone, i.e. the work of a simple homage band or whether it represents an artistically valid effort that happens to borrow the sound and language of one excellent Canterbury band of the past. The answer for me is: Bad Alchemy has assimilated this major influence, and what we hear on this album is in my view a valid and excellent artistic extension, not a mere variation on already traveled roads. Of course, it is clear that this 'Rorschach' s Conundrum' is more than a ... Rorschach's test that would surreptitiously and unintentionally evoke the music of Hatfield and the like: the 'conundrum' here is not in whether this band accidentally sounds like a classic Canterbury band of the 70s - their music IS definitely la Canterbury and la Hatfield -, but whether we should dismiss their effort as a mere homage.

I let myself be swayed by the music: one so rarely hears new, truly canonical Canterbury music with excellent compositions and performances that my attitude is to be grateful that modern bands care to thrive along these veins of inspiration and deliver new music that faithfully recreates so well the 'feel' and texture of a band as superb as Hatfield & the North. Moreover, since we are unlikely to witness new musical creations from the original bands (and especially Hatfield and the North, whose last release is a live album recorded in 1990: the band has occasionally reunited for punctual occasions in the recent past, but there's no sign that they will record any new material), let's say that we are blessed that somebody can fill up the void created by the lack of bands as iconic, brilliant and distinctive as Hatfield and the North, National Health or Egg.

Thanks to Ricochet for the artist addition.

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