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Badger - White Lady CD (album) cover




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1.92 | 37 ratings

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Psychedelic Paul
3 stars BADGER were a short-lived, British rock band with a soulful sound. They were founded by ex-YES keyboard player Tony Kaye. Badger's first album was a Live album titled "One Live Badger" (1973) (the clue is in the title) and this album "White Lady" (1974) is their only studio album. Badger's first album was in the Hard Rock genre, but this album "White Lady" was much more bluesy and soulful, due to the influence of singer Jackie Lomax, who wrote/co-wrote all ten songs on the album. The band also featured drummer Roy Dyke, of Ashton, Gardner & Dyke fame. The album was produced by the noted American musician, arranger and producer, Allen Toussaint. Jeff Beck made a guest appearance on the title track.

The album opens with "A Dream of You", a bluesy and soulful number in the style of Blood, Sweat & Tears, with some charming harmonising from the female backing singers. It's rock & roll with a heart full of soul, because this song has got SOUL in abundance! The song has a romantically passionate appeal, as these lyrics reveal:- "All I have to give, I'd give it all away for just a dream of you, All I ever knew, It doesn't mean anything beside a dream of you, Without a dream, Life is just a broken mirror, Without a dream of you, The way ahead don't get no clearer." It's All About Soul for the second song too with "Everybody - Nobody". It's a care-free song with a laid-back mellow groove, so if you approve, make a move, and get down into the groove. You can do a slow-dance to this groovy and breezy ballad, preferably with a romantic partner for company. "Listen To Me" the singer implores us with the next groovy ballad. It's a horny song (no, not THAT kind of horny) with the brass section sounding in fine fettle and having a blast. This song is oh-so-soulful with the sound of those lovely backing singers, they're together in perfect harmony, just like ebony and ivory, side by side on my piano, Oh Lord, why don't we..... but that's another song altogether. Onto Song No. 4 now and "Don't Pull the Trigger", a swinging and upbeat Jazzy number rooted in the blues, so what have you got to lose, put on those dancing shoes. It's "Just the Way It Goes" with the next number. This song is mellow, and it's all about a lonely old fellow, who's been given the elbow, and finds there's no pot of gold, at the end of the rainbow.

Opening Side Two, We now come to the title track, "White Lady", which features Jeff Beck on guitar. It's a soulful bluesy number which features the requisite guitar solo from Mr. Beck, and very good it is too, so take it away Jeff! "Be with You" is another song in the British blues tradition, but don't let that put you off, because it's also bright and brassy, groovy and soulful with a feel-good vibe. We're getting all religious now with Song No. 8, "Lord Who Give Me Life". Now this is the kind of uplifting spiritual music they SHOULD be playing in church. The vicar and his parishioners would be dancing down the aisle to this lively Jazzy number. Hallelujah brothers! There's "One More Dream To Hold" before we reach the end of the album. It's another nice slice of bluesy and soulful music with these imploring and heartfelt lyrics:- "Moaning pains in aeroplanes, Who's to blame in losing games, I really don't care anymore, Can't put myself there anymore, I really don't care anymore, It all goes by so fast and cold, Can I have one more dream to hold?" ..... This is British blues in the tradition of some of Paul Rodger's and Free's slower numbers, when they weren't rocking and rolling with "Alright Now" and "Wishing Well". It's time to get down and get funky now for the final song on the album, "The Hole Thing". It's a funky syncopated groove all about getting down and getting with it with your soul brothers, so shake your booty and get funky!

We're very much in Blood Sweat & Tears territory with "White Lady". This laid-back album of smooth and sophisticated Jazz- Rock is not in the slightest bit proggy, or even heavy, but if you're looking for a smooth and soulful slice of good old-fashioned British blues, blended with some bright and brassy horns, then this might be just the album for you, especially if you're looking for fun and feeling groovy.

Psychedelic Paul | 3/5 |


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