John Gorka is the energizer bunny of singer/songwriters. He just keeps going and going. Each new release not only equals the quality of his last, but exceeds it. The Company You Keep is John’s eighth album. It features not only superb songwriting, but sterling performances.
While some songwriters create great melodies, Gorka’s forté is his lyrics. The clever wordplay on “Hank Williams Senior Moment” and “Around the House” makes you think while you’re tapping your feet. His songs can also be evocatively beautiful. “When You Walk In” has a haunting quality reminiscent of the best work of Mark Cohn or Jessie Winchester.
Joining John is Micheal Manring on bass, Peter Ostoushko on fiddle, Den Magraw, Patty Larkin, and John Jennings on guitar, and Lucy Kaplansky, Ani DiFranco, and Mary Chapin Carpenter on vocals.
Production credits are shared by Gorka, Andy Stochansky, and Robb Genadek. The sound is warm and intimate, yet texturally intricate. This is a CD that will quickly become a cherished possession.
This review originally appeared in VG‘s June ’01 issue.