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John Adorney – A Silver Thread – Toward A Gentle Place Volume 2 Review

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A Silver Thread is the follow-up to John Adorney’s highly successful 2017 album Toward A Gentle Place. As with the previous release, A Silver Thread takes the listener on a memorable journey towards a peaceful and harmonious place. Listening to the album feels like taking a break from everyday life. Adorney has yet again delivered a heartfelt and accessible release, which will please both old fans and people who have never listened to a meditation album in their life.

A Silver Thread is John Adorney’s 13th solo album. In November last year, he released The Garland, a collection with focus on evocative guitar solos. In our review, we wrote: “Changing instruments in a piece usually alters the whole expression. But the focus on the guitar does not change John Adorney’s sound. The Garland is, in short, another winner.” In 2018, Invisible Songbird was awarded the Best New Age Music Album 2018 award here on New Age Music Guide.

Ilo 
About the album’s layout, Adorney writes: “Iʼve based the sequencing of the music on something called the iso-principle, which is a concept applied in the practice of music therapy where the music played by the therapist matches the energy level or mood of the client, and then is gradually altered to help guide the person toward relaxation and, ideally, a more peaceful state of being.” If you already own the first installment in this series, you already know this effect very well.

“Ilo” is the welcoming album opener. It is a playful piece with gentle piano, strings, guitars, and light rhythm. It has Adorney’s patented sound and expression. Old fans will instantly feel at home. “Where the Water Flows” is a beautiful contrast. It is a thoughtful composition with a quite surprising lead instrument (from 1 minute and 15 seconds, a lap steel guitar with the sound reversed). It sounded quite sharp the first time, but from the second listen, I was a fan.

“A Strange Good Fortune” is one of John Adorney’s most excellent compositions in years, with the potential to become a New Age music hit! It flows beautifully and has many nice twists and turns. It is one of those pieces that don’t need an album or a context. It stands perfectly well on its own feet. The melody is amazing; Don’t be surprised if you find yourself looking for the replay button. I could listen to it all day. A strange good fortune indeed.

Beatus Vivere
“Beatus Vivere,” (“Blessed Life” in Latin), is a piece with classical inspirations – including harpsichord and strings. We know from the past that Adorney can make music in any genre (just check out “Invisible Songbird” if you don’t believe me. It has become something of a modern classic). “Together Once More” is a romantic ballad, perfect for a cozy afternoon in front of the fireplace.

“The Weaver and the Loom” is a piece that makes us contemplate on time gone by and how history changes. This impression makes “The Tiniest House of Time” even more interesting, which deals with the concept of time itself – before “If I Fall Asleep Again” takes us into dreamland. At this stage, we feel how “that gentle place” is coming nearer, track by track.

Few musicians describe beauty better than John Adorney. “Like a Lotus” is breathtakingly beautiful, elegant and fragile at the same time. The cello on “Gentle Touch” is lovely, and I very much like the synth arrangement in the middle too. It is gentle in every sense of the word.

In a Delicate Way
One of the best things about A Silver Thread is the variation in sound. I believe that gives it broad appeal (many synth-based meditation albums seems a bit dull and uninspired for non-New Age music enthusiasts). One example is the inspired oboe on “In a Delicate Way.” Bravo!

The title track is a winner from start to finish. It is a stunning piece with guitar and cello. When we reach “Contemplation”, it is 100 % clear that we have reached our gentle destination – before “Stories Left Untold” ends the album, almost with a question mark. It is an interesting finish that makes you reflect on what an ending is. A new beginning, perhaps?

In conclusion: J. C. Ryle, an English evangelical Anglican bishop, is famous for the quote: “Love should be the silver thread that runs through all your conduct.” This silver thread of love seems to be present on Adorney album too, from the beginning and until the very last note. A Silver Thread is a rock-solid album and a confirmation that Toward A Gentle Place is an essential series in today’s New Age music. A Silver Thread is a release that we all can benefit from, especially now in a time of uncertainty and rapid change.

Score: 95/100 – See our scoring policy

The album is available for download on EverSound.com (The CD will be available on June 7.) It is not yet out on Spotify, but will be available here soon too.

For more information and music samples, visit johnadorney.com