by Mike Saunders
Rolling Stone , 1970
With their new album No Dice, Badfinger has to their credit one of the best records of the year. This album is literally a quantum jump over their uneven debut album Magic Christian Music, and Badfinger is certainly on the way to fulfilling their enormous promise.
To be sure, the type of songs that Badfinger excelled on before are here once again: great rockers ("I Can't Take It," "Love Me Do," "Better Days" and "Watford John") and gorgeously done pop rock and roll ("No Matter What" and "Believe Me"). The difference is that, this time around, everything else is good as well: the whole album flows well, Pete Ham sings in his best McCartney-esque voice, their guitarist now plays like Eric Clapton, and the material is all very good: the whole album adds up as close to the monster Badfinger may well make, in time.
Without a doubt, Badfinger's most noticeable trademark is Pete Ham's ability to write, sing, and even look uncannily like Paul McCartney. And it even goes beyond that, for the group's similarities to the Beatles, in their late Beatles studio-type sound and the good group singing that the late Beatles so direly lacked, are really boggling. It's as if John, Paul, George and Ringo had been reincarnated as Joey, Pete, Tom and Mike of Badfinger.
And, in general, this album sounds like nothing so much as what might have happened had the post-Pepper Beatles gotten it together after their promising double The Beatles. Badfinger is becoming that good, and they may well get better. Don't miss them.