Badfinger was one of those woulda-coulda bands that had lots of promise but never was able to fully deliver on it. The British power pop group had three gifted songwriters (founder Pete Ham, bassist Tom Evans and guitarist Joey Molland), a potentially powerful record label (Apple Records) behind them, association with and support from label’s founders (the Beatles), a hit single (“Come And Get It,” January 1970) supplied by Paul McCartney, and three straight worldwide Top 10 albums in the early 70s. But by the time Badfinger’s fifth album (including one issued as the Iveys), Ass was released on November 26, 1973, the bottom was falling out. The band had allowed a series of management missteps, they’d gone through one producer after another (including Todd Rundgren) without developing a consistent, sustainable sound, serious friction within the group was developing from frustration with their predicament, and Apple was in financial trouble after the Beatles’ dissolution in 1970. (The pressure eventually proved too much for Ham, who committed suicide less than 18 months after Ass was released).
Ham and his cohorts self-produced Ass, which didn’t help their cause. Plus, it was the last record released by Apple and received little promotional support from the label. But it’s a good early 70s power pop album, slightly harder and faster than the trademark pop-rock harmonies of its predecessor, Straight Up (their best work). Ass is available as a CD from Amazon (click here).