The Fire in the Flint
2012 / EverSound
Review by Michael Debbage
Last year John Adorney released a retrospective live cd and dvd that focused on his prior six recordings with EverSound that began back in 1998. This successful look back took place while Adorney was looking forward and recording The Fire In The Flint over the last three years and the title to the latter could not be more appropriate. While John’s recording output has been consistent, his recent recordings have lost a certain spark over the last few years. However, his latest recording, though still somewhat safe, reflects a certain spark and pep that has been missing since his benchmark recording Waiting For The Moon and Adorney comes very close to resetting his own expectations.
The usual players are present, the most obvious of these being the sweet unassuming vocals of Daya who is featured on four of the ten tracks. She is most prominent on the mid tempo compositions “Endless Rain” and “Always Remembering You” that also include lyrical content. Meanwhile Marcel Adjibi revisits and appears on the more contemporary “Aliho Houn/The Path Is Open” with a solid offbeat percussion rhythm, fusing a reggae-world groove to it. Richard Hardy is also featured on the alto and bamboo flutes alongside Adorney’s cello work on the more delicate “A Moment Noticed”.
Otherwise, Adorney’s piano and guitar work comes to the forefront via “A Beggars Fortune”, which is washed in optimism. In contrast, he is also featured on the very progressive electronic ambient adventure established on the creative “Admiration (2012 mix)”. Not quite sure why it is subtitled the 2012 mix which would suggest that this song is being revisited but this is new to these ears. Meanwhile, Adorney polarizes matters and concludes the album with the stripped down and reflective “Dawn” that features only Adorney and his piano who credits Debussy’s “Claire de Lune” as his inspiration.
So Adorney comes very close in matching his epic moment Waiting For The Moon. More importantly he does this by taking some shrewd calculated chances, thus not to dispel his fan base, but still creating a compelling recording. There is no doubt that Adorney’s creative spark has been reignited making The Fire In The Flint a very appropriate album title.
December 22, 2012