Tony Doggett has a pronounced affinity for the old British Invasion sound and often composes in it, but a number of factors prevent the sun from shining on those cuts. Chiefest among the problems is a largely uninflected vocal stream that doesn't fit what's demanded from the old Herman's Hermits / Dave Clark Five days. Where he really shines is in the folkish numbers like Part of Your World, in a setting that complements the more wistful nature of his sentiments.
The cut also boasts fine musicianship from the sessioneers, as Tommy Lepson's organ and Arielle Moore's violin beautifully companion Doggett's emotional content. Compare it to Irresistible, where an attempt at jazzy strains fails due to the flat-ish singing. However, Double Rainbow follows with a Peter, Paul, and Mary orientation and re-establishes the singer's true nature. The melody line is superb, a feathery piece with gentle hammer dulcimer and uninsistent repetitions capturing the ear. A Joker's Dream then succeeds Rainbow, expanding the billowingly pastel environment, a great immersion in a semi-hallucinatory episode.
And so the CD proceeds, with some very good folk material and not-so-good pseudo-rock. Face it, this guy's a folkie and a good one, not a rocker. Doggett's a globetrotter, a Foreign Service employee, and knows the world. His folk side captures that well, and that's where he needs to stay. Cuts like Quite Like You and Spice of Life kinda hang in the middle, undecided, propulsive and folky but not his forte (with the lyrics showing the cliché side of his writing a bit too strongly). Had the entire CD been composed of nothing but the laid back folk / soft rock material…
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2009, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
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