PRINT May 1987



I LIKE THE LOW, almost subliminal growl from the guitar that opens “You Owe Me Some Kind of Love,” the first cut on Chris Isaak (Warner Bros.). The Ana sound fixes the doomy aura that surrounds the whole album; emotionally, it suggests almost everything Isaak and his band have to say. Each element of the music is subsumed into a romantic dream so seamless that after a dozen playings there’s little chance of separating Isaak’s singing from his band’s playing, and no reason to. The second lp from a San Francisco rockabilly acolyte, this is a self-conscious, formal record, at once an argument and an event; it begins with an acknowledgment of its chosen form and then, acknowledging that form can’t be separated from context (i.e., 1987, more than 30 years after rockabilly was invented), tries to escape both. The result is a thrill—the thrill of once again realizing a form while violating its

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