Good things come in small packages.
The duo that is One Adam One are Americana veterans, singer-songwriter Adam Reichmann and his long-term musical partner Todd Schnitzer. The two have a long history of writing together, forming the core of the critically acclaimed ’90s/’00s alt-country band Nadine. After disbanding from that project, the two spent time focusing individually on other creative projects, and One Adam One sees the reuniting of their songwriting and recording partnership.
That the two are well seasoned in their respective crafts is abundantly clear in this mini album ‘Where Do I Begin‘. The five-song package has an evocative, often cinematic sound with strong and revealing lyrics.
The title-track opener has the haunting feel of a Simone Felice classic with sensitive and beautiful storytelling. The vocal and musical quality instantly wraps around the listener with a comforting and longing warmth.
Next up, ‘Living Between the Lines‘ features twice on the download and streaming versions, treating the listener to a clean edit as a bonus to the explicit rendition. Proclaiming that “It’s a fucked up world, we’re just living in it” sets the scene for this song about a modern or perhaps drug-fueled life and acknowledges “You gotta get control of it“. Although not stated to be one of their influences, a stirring hint of Joe Jackson comes through in this song. That, together with the gorgeous backing vocals from Stephanie Stewart, gives the song a refreshing edge.
All songs on the album are written by Reichmann and Schnitzer except ‘Hollywood Ending‘, which also has Steve Rauner in the writing mix. With the addition of strings and John Horton adding to the fabulous blend of guitars with his baritone, we are treated to a vast, cinematic sound.
A big, hopeful sound features throughout ‘Cold Murmers‘ too. With what is perhaps a distracting drum lead, this is a song of anticipation and expectation. “And I see the Spring in your eyes, And I feel the breeze as it slowly rises, out of the shadows, and into the light.”
Pulling the drums back might make this a little less frantic and more thrilling. However, there is no doubt stirring drama throughout the song.
“Well the roads in Nebraska are straight as a rail“… These opening lyrics, together with the initial melody, scream Springsteen. After all, one wonders how singing about Nebraska could possibly conjure up anything else. However, that is where that particular resemblance begins and ends. ‘Platte River‘ is an exceptional song in which the protagonist is haunted by having let go of a relationship he felt he wasn’t ready for. The musing electric guitar from Reichmann, together with his lead vocal and Stewarts’ backing vocals for the sensational “Sha la la’s“, are quite magical.