By Eric Bradley
For a guy producing an album with his wife and healing from a serious vocal cord injury, Paul Curreri found enough time to put a lot of thought, harmony and poetry into his latest album, “California.” It’s an interesting and addictive compilation of Curreri’s folk roots and an intimate look inside his thoughts and music.
Curreri’s specialty is pure Americana, and the Virginia native sounds like he relishes his niche. California is Curreri’s sixth album and comes three years after his last release. The last three years have been spent assisting his wife, Devon Sproule, who also just released an album, “Don’t Hurry for Heaven,” and healing from that injury.
Curreri’s first track is a bluesy, folk ballad called “Now I Can Go On.” His Paul Simon is showing on “Once Upon a Rooftop.” “Here Comes Another Morning” has a Johnny Cash-driven beat with a rhythm that inspires visions of a 1960s rail yard. Curreri’s music is packed with emotion, waterfall guitar riffs and a welcoming bass line that echoes Springsteen and Dylan folk. “Tight Pack Me Sugar” shows us Curreri is more than a guitar musician, as he uses a piano and snare drum to support his clever lyrics and soulful sound.
The song “Off the Street, Onto the Road” exemplifies his American folk artist style. My favorite is “When What You Do Don’t Do It Anymore.” The music displays his words like a frame displays an oil on canvas. This song could appear in an indie motion picture soundtrack right now.
Look for Curreri’s name to pop up more often as the mainstream takes notice of what it’s been missing. He created a gem in California and the attention is well deserved. You can see Curreri and Sproule play a rare split bill at The Falcon in Marlboro, N.Y. June 26.