Paladin were a curious cross betwixt the fermenting heavy progressive styles in the UK with the concurrently swelling west coast Latin Rock sound, much like contemporaries Jody Grind and Skin Alley. And much like that latter trans-Atlantic congregate, Paladin‘s foundation was marked with stateside footprints, formed as they were by British musical sidemen during a lengthy stay in New York. And in a further Concorde twist, Paladin‘s bassist Pete Beckett would resurface at the other end of the ’70s in the quintessentially Californian smooth rock band Player.

In any case, Paladin produced a bold if admittedly bumpy body of work over two fine albums, which could easily be distilled into one terrific long-player. Their eponymous vinyl arrival from 1971 contained their best song, “Dance of the Cobra”, a cascading organ shredder forwarded by a most curvilinear bassline which Beckett later morphed into gold as the backdrop to the 1978 Player smash “Baby Come Back”.

“Dance of the Cobra” (miss-titled “Well We Might” – ironically a lesser cut from their second album, Charge) can be heard on this page:

For comparisons sake, here’s “Baby Come Back” (incase you haven’t heard it in a while):


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