Due to copyright issues ALL BADGEMAN MATERIAL FROM 1990 TO 1992, INCLUDING THE ALBUMS "KINGS OF THE DESERT" AND "RITUAL LANDSCAPE" HAS BEEN REMOVED FROM THIS PAGE! I hope to resolve these issues and restore the missing tracks.
FOR A FREE MP3 OF RITUAL LANDSCAPE PLEASE VISIT THE FIRE RECORDS ONLINE STORE - MP3 DOWNLOADS ARE FREE AND ALL OUR STUFF IS AVAILABLE THAT WAY (DESPITE PHYSICAL COPIES BEING SOLD OUT).
The Badgeman formed around 1988 in Salisbury, Wiltshire, in the South West of England, originally comprising John Packwood on lead guitar, Tim Kerley on drums, Neale Hancock on guitar and vocals, and Simon Wigglesworth on Bass.
Influences were diverse and varied, taking in the 80's indie scene (c86 etc), 1960's psych, freakbeat, and garage, 70's and 80's punk,post-punk, and new wave, metal, classic rock, 70's experimental stuff, and more besides!
A flexi disc, "Goinsane" was released in 1988 (split with Salisbury post c-86ers The Mayfields), and distributed with various fanzines such as the excellent "Sowing Seeds" - this resulted in us signing with Glass Records (home at the time to Spacemen 3, The Pastels, and The Jazz Butcher - all favorites of ours). We got half way through recording an album when the label went bust! The album would have been sh*t anyway!
We moved on to Paperhouse Records (part of Fire Records of London) where our labelmates included The Walkingseeds and Teenage Fanclub (great bands). A debut album, "Kings of The Desert" was recorded and released to some critical acclaim in 1990, with the debut single, "Crystals" getting a lot of airtime from John Peel, good write ups from the likes of Edwin Pouncey etc. To be honest, it was probably the only good track on an otherwise fairly average lp of sixties inspired indie landfill!
After a European tour with Teenage Fanclub we recorded an EP "The Curse of The Badgeman" in Dec 1990 - we were finally producing good stuff and finding our own sound (dark folk undercurrents, organic post punk, whatever!) - "Magic Bullet", "Drought", and "Crop Cycle" are all here.
The first scheduled release saw the distribution company go bust, the second release date coincided with Sounds magazine going bust (we were to get a full page spread interview to talk about the EP) - life really was imitating art with "The Curse"!!!
Sometime around 1991 we did a terrible version of "Sister Ray" for Imaginary Records VU tribute album "Heaven and Hell" - it was nice that they liked us enough to ask.
Finally, in 1991 we recorded the album "Ritual Landscape" - building on some of the dark folk and post punk ideas explored on the EP, this is a pretty dense album, and I think we all knew it wouldn't be popular - we have to thank Phil McMullen at Ptolemaic Terrascope for keeping faith with us coz it felt like no one else wanted to be associated with us at all, although the live shows at the time were pretty incendiary and well recieved. Fifteen years later one of my all time hero's, Julian Cope, made Ritual Landscape his "Unsung Album of The Month", so I guess we were doing something right. Anyway, some of the tracks are here, so judge for yourself.
I've also included some tracks at the end done years later with various friends from Salisbury including Jim Harrison (of "Bubblegum Splash!" and "Jane From Occupied Europe") Micky Dyer, Ian Browne, Darren Dazman Blake, and Matt Venn. There is a good cover of Mayo Thompson's "Worried Worried", plus a reworking of Dylans "Wanted Man" - do have a listen and comment if you like.
Love and peace
The Badgeman’s tracks