Released: December 1973
Chart Peak: #122
Weeks Charted: 8
The album title is the band's reference to themselves as unwitting followers of some enticing but unrealizable dream. That dream may have been Badfinger's expectations of their place in the Beatles' initial plans for Apple as the nurturer of worthy talent, or it may have been the group's fantasy that, by being in close proximity to the Beatles, they could somehow become them. In discarding that dream, they've discovered their own identity as a group, and that discovery gives this album its surprising forcefulness.
"Apple of My Eye," which opens the record, is both a decisive expression of disaffiliation and a sentiment-filled song about leaving an old lover behind -- namely, the label for which this is their last LP. This nicely sets up the album's ambivalent tone, the product of a confrontation between aggression and sentiment that is surprisingly effective.
This is a surprisingly vibrant album from a group that has never managed to string its scattered hits into a distinguishable identity, and which seemed to be headed for oblivion or dissolution, whichever came first. It would qualify as a comeback if it weren't so clearly an introduction to the band beneath the veneer.
- Bud Scoppa, Rolling Stone, 1/31/74.
A very well-done set from this vastly overlooked British Band. Their fusion of strong vocal harmony with both intricate acoustic guitar work and a straight rock sound give them the combination that should attract overdue attention. Previously thought of as mere Beatles sound-alikes, this foursome displays its own musical style with cuts like "When I Say" and "Blind Owl."
- Billboard, 1974.
A step down from Badfinger's two previous classics, Ass was the final kiss-off on the Beatles' rapidly deteriorating Apple Record label. In spite of some fairly inconsequential tracks, "Apple of My Eye" (the single), "Icicles," "I Can Love You," and the first half of the "I Want You/She's So Heavy" rip, "Timeless," more than redeem this release. * * *
- Rick Clark, The All-Music Guide to Rock, 1995.
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