Silver Lightning from a Black Sky
It’s not too often that a Grammy winner goes virtually unnoticed. Okay, so Kenneth Ishak has only won Norwegien Grammys, but still, that’s pretty impressive. Now on his third solo disc, Silver Lightning from a Black Sky, Ishak is ready to make his mark on the U.S. and based on just the sheer diversity, he’s going to make a splash.
Ishak sounds a lot like a resurrected Elliott Smith on the beautifully melancholy “Snakes in the Grass,” while he brings his best John Vanderslice on “New Rising Sun.”
“Misfits in Love” sounds like a more accessible version of Radiohead’s “Kid A.” The tinny drum kit and piano chords make for something that is less avant-garde and more mainstream, but equally as brilliant.
Ishak takes on his demons on “Don’t Touch My Brother,” as he deals with growing up being half-Norwegian and half-Malay. The song is like taking The Lemonheads and transporting them back to the ’70s.
Ishak’s lyrics are also top notch. The chorus of the mid-tempo “Highway of Madness” takes you on the “neon highway of madness/ And I don’t mind cause reality is not what it’s supposed to be.” Save me a seat. On the beautifully quiet “The Sword” he tackles a relationship where “you were the good one/ And I am the sword cuts and scars/ Courtesy of the boy I was/ Before the black bliss that I had to kiss/ To see who I loved more.”
Kenneth Ishak is a little bit of a lot of artists, but on Silver Lightning from a Black Sky he proves that he is also completely unique from all of his influences and that he is ready to make his mark on the U.S.
Kenneth Ishak: www.myspace.com/kennethishak