ARTIST: Chris Isaak
TITLE: Chris Isaak
YEAR RELEASED: 1986
CHART ACTION: #194
SINGLES: You Owe Me Some Kind of Love, Blue Hotel (#100 UK), Lie to Me, Heart Full of Soul
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: This was really out of step with the radio of the time.
LINEUP: Chris Isaak, James Wilsey, Chris Solberg, Prairie Prince, Rowland Salley, Kenny Dale Johnson
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: More moody, somewhat twangy songs from the silky crooner that hearkens back to another time and place in rock history.
SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: Hearing the vibrato on the voice, the twangy yet clean guitars, you wonder if Isaak was about 25 years too late to start his career. But the production is so crisp and clear, and the drums and bass sounds definitely belong to a more modern time, that the record is timeless – it could be released almost any time in the modern rock era.
Isaak’s voice – unique in this time – can soar like Roy Orbison’s and also evoke feeling in his lower register. One issue, a minor quibble, is that sometimes the record seems stuck in place a bit in the middle – though toward the end there’s some variety in styles.
Isaak rolls out ten originals, and a Yardbirds cover that has his imprint all over it. Most every track is a winner, and would be one you’d happy to be have come out of your speakers. The country was more about hair metal, pseudo disco and Madonna wanna-bes so moody and honest rock had a hard time in the marketplace.
NOTES & MINUTAE: “Blue Hotel” was a modest hit in France.
IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: No
GRADE: A-: Another good to great record from Isaak that was ignored.