Bad Touch 

Truth Be Told

(Bad Touch Records/Cadiz)

Roaring out of Norfolk with a mission to deliver hard-edged roots rock, Bad Touch do look the part. But already a well-honed and powerful sound has been attained by this ensemble and – like Inglorious – it’s down to the songs now to fuel their journey.

Opening for Whisky Myers at the Dome in London, the group displayed a disciplined approach which allows for improvised soloing – with all the classic guitar and amp gear – and singing which is driven but feeds off the crowd. You could say that at this point there is little that seems truly original about Bad Touch however that does not stop it sounding very fresh and who knows where these obviously gifted players will take their sound in the future?

George Drewry is a strong and apposite drummer for this band, also singing and playing keyboards so respect due BUT he is a tad too keen on John Bonham’s style at present. The easy cure? To be locked in a room with a stereo and Restrictions by Cactus and This Was by Jethro Tull for a week. Guitarwise, Rob Glendinning and Daniel Seekings show all the usual influences and spark well off each other. I suspect bassist Michael Bailey HAS listened to Cactus…and The James Gang and he was very impressive live.  No problems on the vocal front as Stevie Westwood would be an asset to ANY rock band. Confident without being cocky and a neat grip on melody.

On to the album then – One More Night chugs into earshot with distant Hammond and rocks the house. Inevitably the singing is Transatlantic which I don’t really care for however in this style of music not many acts eschew the drawl, do they? And Westwood’s diction makes the most of the lyrics.

99% – as featured on their rather stylish T shirt – is a corker of a song. Waiting For This has a moody intro, shades of Led Zep and a plaintive vocal. Under My Skin was a stage choice and has neat staggered phrasing over fuzzed chords. Heartbreaker, Soulshaker is lively and wah’d along; Take Your Time is Southern Rock at a steady ace and a rather good song, a tinge of Devon Allman?

Let The Sun Shine rings with urgency and might be the track you’d play to a mate asking what Bad Touch sound like. It’s grown on me, anyway. My Mother Told Me has a tumbling guitar start and a singalong vibe. Outlaw is the cream of the crop here, a quiet intro giving way to Skynyrd flowing axe and the best singing on the set. Excellent drumwork, too.

Made To Break takes a funk riff and makes the best of it but this ain’t the best song here ; Healing Hand sounds so determined the listener may as well surrender from the outset, more fine singing and a better lyric than the last two. The guitarists blend so well here you would think they were old hands. Catchy too. The Mountain is one I recall from the live set and it’s the kind of atmospheric cut the Charlie Daniels Band could pull off well. It’s another highpoint in a consistent collection, background sustained notes and all.

So, another outfit heading straight back to the 70s for inspiration but likely to keep filling halls in the here and now, on this form.

Pete Sargeant


Bad Touch's new album 'Truth Be Told' s out now on Bad Touch Records with distribution via Cadiz. For more information visit their official website here:

(There are a lot of tour dates. See elsewhere on our site for details, as spread around by Bad Touch themselves and thank you for that, lads. Bad Touch are the kind of act we want to champion. Thank you Linsey and Mark.) 

Bad Touch