Vincent Priceless

CD Baby

 


Louis Paul

Black Light Revival will revive your faith is Great Music being made today!
Want to take a trip down memory lane with twelve tunes that sound like you heard 'em on the radio but didn't? Then buy this CD! Vincent Priceless takes a great, tuneful journey through a lot of styles stopping along the way for some melodious Psychedelia, Big Star-like Power Pop, dead in your face 70s Pop Metal, and big wollops of Prog Rock. There's some Post Punk New Wave stuff going on here too. I believe if you like any of the kinds of music I mentioned above... you'll really like the standout cuts "Psychedelic Sunshine Pop Crusader" (In an alternate universe this would be all over the radio!), "Is it My Wheels?", and a really groovy take-off on the kind of stuff The Beatles and The Stones were doing with their psych records with "All the Colors of the Rainbow". This is a really fun listen...and oh yes, it contains lots of Mellotron on the record...and you know what that means...Intense groovy sounds. I like it a lot...and believe you will too.

Planet Mellotron

Vincent Priceless  (US)

Vincent Priceless, 'Black Light Revival'

Black Light Revival  (2014,  41.35)

 ***½ / TTT½

Psychedelic Sunshine Pop Crusader
Frozen Fathers
Mitchum
What's in Your Food?
I'm Edgy (a Devotion for '71 Alice)
...Machines of Loving Grace
It Was a Very Good Year

Is it My Wheels?
Semi-Automatic Family Man
I Love Loosely
All the Colours of the Rainbow
Fluorescent Flashback
 

Current availability:

  • Baby Werewolf

Mellotrons used:

  • Priceless' own M400 and M4000

The stupendously-nom-de-plumed Vincent Priceless (no, I don't know his real name) is a New York-based multi-instrumentalist who's been playing since the late '70s, by the look of it. I believe 2014's Black Light Revival is his first solo album, though, a mélange of rock'n'roll, surf and psych stylings, with a smidgeon of turn-of-the-'80s noo wave for good measure. Top tracks include the album's two covers, Sinatra's It Was A Very Good Year and Hugh Cornwell's All The Colours Of The Rainbow, excellent jangly opener Psychedelic Sunshine Pop Crusader, the punchy, Cooper-esque I'm Edgy (A Devotion For '71 Alice) and psych closer Fluorescent Flashback, although, despite the album's relative brevity, it could probably lose a couple of the more bog-standard rock'n'roll numbers.

Mellotronically speaking, Priceless plays both his old M400 and an M4000 (his?), with strings all over opener Psychedelic Sunshine Pop Crusader, less of the same on Frozen Fathers, occasional background choirs on Mitchum, I'm Edgy and Semi-Automatic Family Man, strings and choirs (sometimes background) on What's In Your Food?, I Love Loosely and All The Colours Of The Rainbow, 'everlasting sustain' choirs and swirly strings on ...Machines Of Loving Grace, choirs and pseudo-orchestral strings on It Was A Very Good Year and string section (and brass?) on Fluorescent Flashback. Enough Mellotron? I'm wondering if I've missed anything on Is It My Wheels?; the oboe-ish sound is more likely to be Priceless' generic Yamaha, but I've been wrong before... So; a decent collection of often witty material, with shedloads of very real Mellotron. What's not to like?

Expose

Vincent Priceless — Black Light Revival
(Baby Werewolf BW CD 0114, 2015, CD)

 

by Jon Davis, Published 2015-12-29

Black Light Revival Cover art

With a name like Vincent Priceless, you know not to expect something too serious. But what you actually should expect is a harder question. Black Light Revival could indicate a predilection towards psychedelic music, and that is a good part of the story with this release, though not the whole story. The opening track is “Psychedelic Sunshine Pop Crusader,” which, in addition to being a really catchy psych tune, reads almost as a manifesto. A close musical reference would be The Dukes of Stratosphear. Jangly guitars, Mellotron, tremolo vocals, wah-wah guitar – only the glaring lack of harpsichord and sitar prevents this song from checking all the boxes. But aside from those trappings, it’s a fun tune, name-dropping a bunch of psych classics and bemoaning the decline of rock in a hip-hop world. Luckily, the rest of the tracks provide some variety, not just repeating the same sounds. I’m often reminded of Johnny Unicorn’s music – the sense of humor is similar, as is the attention to detail in arrangement and production, not to mention a slight vocal resemblance. But Black Light Revival is not a joke album, rather a solid psych album that doesn’t take itself too seriously and has some humor in the lyrics. In this respect it’s very much in keeping with the spirit of the style, skewering certain aspects of modern life in the way the classic 60s bands took on the conformity, authority, and hypocrisy they saw around them. Priceless himself plays all the instruments except drums by Tom Curiano; one track features added guitar and drums from Art Quinn. This is an all-around great listen, and if it’s not quite up to the level of 25 O’Clock, well, what is?