Priggen, Spike - The Very Thing You Treasure

Year of Release: 2001
Label: The Volaré Label
Catalog Number: VOL001
Format: CD
Total Time: 69:39:00

If you are into 60s/70s rock and the 90s retro roots-rock styles, then you will like Spike Priggen. This is music that is a mix of Gin Blossoms, Oasis, Black Crowes, Lyle Lovett, The Beatles and The Beach Boys, and Priggen's influences are probably the same as those first few listed. But, as I was listening, perhaps the strongest comparison I could make is to The Byrds. Failed relationships form the basis lyrically for most of the album. Or, in the case of "I'm In Love," a potential relationship with, as he sings, "every girl" and later "everything."

It's not very proggy, but it is a lot of fun and a joy to listen to. It's simple and direct, easy going and friendly. Even in it's sad tales of lost love, it is quite chipper. Twangy guitars can be heard throughout, as well as Mark Spencer (Blood Oranges, Lisa Loeb) on Hammond M3, who appears on 7 of the album's 12 tracks (he also plays resonator guitar and tambourine). Mellotron (Dean Falcone) appears on "The Right Thing" a spacey, gentle, fragile, country rock piece -- but for the twang, the Eagles come to mind. Interestingly, "Alright" sounds like something that a post-Eagles Glenn Frey could have written and sung, and Priggen here sounds a lot like Frey (he does elsewhere, too, but here it is most pronounced). The two distinctive sounds here are the two Leslie guitars - Priggen on the "slow" guitar, Dean Falcone on "fast Leslie guitar." "She Used To Be My Baby" is the kind of song you'd expect to hear as incidental music in some down-to-earth television series -- what came to mind for me was NBC's Ed; that down-home, folksy feel. "Yesterday" kicks things into a high gear with jangly, 60s exuberance... not quite surf rock, but certainly one can hear elements of it in there, as well as a bit of Cheap Trick (a influenced of Priggen's). Jangly as well is "Outtasight," which has echoes of The Beatles' "Ticket To Ride" slowed down to Carpenter's speed, making it more like The Byrd's (shades of "Mr. Tambourine Man," and the track includes tambourine, too.) And then we have "What Yer Missin'" which could be a missing The Monkees track penned by Micky Dolenz - it's just Priggen on guitar, bass, and voice and Steve Judd on drums.

The Very Thing That You Treasure contains a few unlisted bonus tracks, one of which is an excerpt of a "legendary bootleg tape featuring Nashville radio preacher the Prophet Omega...." Of the other two, one is a very long conversation/argument, the other is a mellow, somewhat dreary, piece of guitar, percussion and voice.

There isn't a duff track on the album. Priggen has been performing and recording for years, so even though this is Priggen's first solo album, the songs have had time to be polished. I must say that I expected a more progressive rock release, given the nature of this site and what things are sent for review, so I was initially surprised by what was coming out of my speakers. But, given that my non-prog tastes run to the roots rock variety (though Oasis aren't in that category, and I'm not sure if I actually like them), that surprise was pleasant. If you're like me, you'll like this.

Every Broken Heart / Alright / She Used To Be My Baby / Yesterday / The Right Thing / Outtasight / What Yer Missing / Listening To Me / Nothing / Look It Up / I'm In Love / So Good To See You / (plus three bonus tracks)

Spike Priggen - acoustic guitar, slow Leslie guitar, bass, mellotron, and vocals
Jon Graboff - electric guitars, Fender bass VI, electric guitar w/Leslie, and mandolin
Scott Yoder - bass
Brian Dougherty - drums and tambourine
Mark Spencer - Hammond M3, resonator guitar and tambourine
Danny Weinkauf - bass
Dean Falcone - fast Leslie guitar, and mellotron
Jane Scarpantoni - cello (3,9)
Joe McGinty - piano (3)
Steve Judd - drums (4, 7, 10)
Thomas Goss - drums (9, 12)

The Very Thing That You Treasure (2001)
Stars After Stars After Stars (2005)
There's No Sound In Flutes (2006)

Genre: Rock

Origin US

Added: February 23rd 2002
Reviewer: Stephanie Sollow
Artist website:
Hits: 629
Language: english


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