Kishi Bashi, Lighght – Album review
Kishi Bashi’s debut album, 151a, was one of my favourite, most played albums of 2012. Upon first hearing it, I remember being so startled by its awesomeness I thought, “Where the heck has this guy been hiding?!” because honestly, I hadn’t heard a peep about him. So I pretty much Toyota jumped the other day when I found out the Japanese/American multi-instrumentalist was releasing a second studio album.
Lighght (pronounced “light”), lives up to, if not surpasses its precursor’s award-winning goodness. It does not hide in 151a’s shadow, but instead, joins it the limelight, complimenting it perfectly. The album opens by showing off K Ishibashi’s classical skills, with a fleeting and squealing violin solo that almost induces dizziness.
It’s followed by the poppy, ‘Philosophize In It! Chemicalize With It!’ – the first single release from the album which begins with harmonic chorals, kicks along with fun acoustics, chipper lyrics and high-pitched flickers of strings. Then comes ‘The Ballad of Mr Steak’. Well, come on. How’s that for a song title? A song about steak, metaphorically or not, is always amusing in my opinion. Especially when it includes lyrics like “booty booty shaky shake”, a perfect track to wiggle it to, y’all.
The album skips along in an upbeat manner with layered vocals and kaleidoscopic sounds of synth and strings. It’s a combination of hyperactivity and hallucinogenic sounds (which will undoubtedly get the thumbs-up from greenery enthusiasts). ‘Bittersweet Genesis for Him and Her’ is a sweet little narrative of a song that will appeal to modern day romanticists, and the heart-warming love song ‘Q and A’ will totally melt your gf’s heart with charming lyrics like, “You are the answer to my question/ You are my accomplice in a crime / You are my wing-woman and did I mention/ We were together in another life?”
The album then comes to a close with ‘Hahaha Pt. 2”, the quintessential summertime song, and the transcendental ‘In Fantasia’, which will set your imagination free.
To wrap it up, this album is downright loopy… but in all the right ways. If you’re a fan of feel-good quirkiness then Lighght is the album for you.
‘Lighght’ is out now through Pod via Inertia.
Review by Liana Gow-Killingbeck.