Wednesday, August 9, 2017 at 12:30 am
For Chris Isaak, first comes the song.
And for First Comes The Night — Isaak’s stunning first album of new material in six years — this gifted singer-songwriter and bandleader is bringing us a bumper crop of strong and intriguing songs from which to choose. “There was no mission for this album other than to follow the songs,” Chris Isaak explains, and in terms of songwriting, the floodgates really opened this time. “My last release was Beyond The Sun — my tribute to Sun Records with a lot of covers — so this time around I had a lot of new material that I was thrilled to record. My manager always tells me, `We need more songs.’ This time, even she realized she’s creating a songwriting monster, and had to beg me to stop.”
Yet for all this exciting collaboration, First Comes The Night is very much a great Chris Isaak album that features him at his best. For all the firsts, there’s a strong through-line that continues from Isaak’s earlier triumphs like Silvertone (1985), Chris Isaak (1986), Heart Shaped World (1989), San Francisco Days (1993), Forever Blue (1995) and Always Got Tonight (2002). “I guess you can make a drink with many ingredients, but if one is very strong, that’s what you taste,” says Isaak with a laugh. “For better or worse, I have a tendency to dominate because I have a big voice and some twisted ideas.”