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Budgie - In For The Kill ! CD (album) cover

IN FOR THE KILL !

Budgie

 

Prog Related

3.74 | 127 ratings

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Groucho Barks
4 stars We all have an album that we picked up for pennies off a market stall that sets us off on a journey and a devotion to something deeply unfashionable, even with the then long haired alternative music scene.....Ladeezz and genllmen I give you Wales finest power trio Budgie and their 4th album, 1974's In For The Kill! It was my first introduction and yes I eventually owned the lot...and it may not be their best...but it will always mean something to me. A line up change had introduced a new drummer who to me was more powerful if a tad less busy than Ray Phillips who was replaced. Maybe this was why we got perhaps the heaviest Budgie album ...yes IMHO...and it is none the worse for that. We can argue how 'prog' a classic power trio can be (Rush sort of step outside the box on that one) but to me this was filed under heavy as hell prog and still should be. The opening title track is a rumbling riff mirrored by guitar and bass and it chugs along at a fair lick...with a vocal/guitar twin line that underpins the verse. It also allows one of my favourite guitarists, Tony Bourge to show his prowess both as lead and riff player. Apparently Van Halen used to do a version of this before they 'broke through' but don't let that put you off! Next came the inclusion of an earlier single, 'Crash Course In Brain Surgery' (gotta love the title!) which was done and dusted in just over 2 and a half mins (Metallica covered it on their Garage Days Revisited EP). Then the acoustic interlude of 'Wondering What Everyone Knows' which is the breather we all needed before the epic 'Zoom Club'...a slinky riff built up by band dynamics to a crescendo then maintained on the intensity meter...with variations and diversions for 10 marvellous minutes...Bourge using a riff/rhythm/lead technique to cover all bases. If they ever ask me on Desert Island Discs....this track will be played. Side 2 barges in with 'Hammer and Tongs'...a Zeppelinesque blues riff of light and shade and heart wrenching intent...that fills out the start and middle before a more ethereal bridge takes us in to an unexpected straight 12 bar....which solos off in to the faders....It is one of those tracks that is all but cliché yet rises above that with its sheer chutzpah! It sort of keys you in to 'Running From My Soul' which has a swaggering blues based template with the bass (take a bow Burke Shelley) used as a Lemmy style rhythm machine...well before Motorhead! Finally the most complex track 'Living On Your Own'. This one has a measure of Man (fellow Welsh prog heads) thrown in to the mix although they were never this heavy...and it has several contrasting passages that again are built on a great band dynamic in to a satisfying whole to end the album! It even made #29 in the UK LP charts and as was the case back in the day, was a rushed affair between never ending tours, hence its length (short) and rough edges (charm). We can all argue over labels but why this band aren't under the 'Heavy Prog' sub header is beyond my comprehension!
Groucho Barks | 4/5 |

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