John Flynn,
Dragon
(MettaFour, 2004)

John Flynn writes and performs urban folk songs that are pertinent to the problems of today, sometimes with a cynically amused eye ("Minnie Lou"), other times with sorrowful anger ("Angel Dawson"). He writes of love ("She Moves Me"), life and death ("Full Circle"), greed ("Dragon") and faith of different kinds ("Not With My Jesus" and "Hope Sleeps").

The album doesn't preach, doesn't foist Flynn's viewpoint on the listener, but allows the listener to be both educated and entertained. I particularly liked "Big Boat Comin'," which is about the elephant in the zoo in Prague but alludes to the great flood and Noah's ark!

Flynn's songwriting is sharply intelligent and emotive, gentle in the celebration of love, harsh in condemnation of poverty, drugs and corporate avarice. In tribute to Anne Frank, he displays tenderness and he crosses the barriers of religious fervour and blind bigotry to support the beliefs of the individuals in the hope of forgiveness and love.

Dragon is a thought-provoking album, well-crafted and played. It is not for background listening, but is instead a wake-up call for society at large.

- Rambles
written by Jenny Ivor
published 21 August 2004

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