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6 Degrees Entertainment

Title - 'EP' (Sony)
Artist - Isaac Russell

Acoustic guitar and a voice, Isaac Russell may well sound like most others of his ilk doing the same thing, but what sets him apart is that he doesn't strain to be something he's not. especially given the amazing fact that he's just 18 years-old!

In much the same vein of a young Tyler Hilton, the relaxed chords, calm vocals with nothing shouted, no accelerated beats, all come together to kick off the EP with the lovely 'Lighthouse.' Sure he might well raise the tempo somewhat at its end, but its both welcomed and deserved.

The next track on the EP is 'Made Me A Man,' a slightly BNL-vibed affair, that seems to carry with it a very personal, experienced message! The sweet 'House Of Cards' strolls along next, Russell's voice actually sounding reminiscent of the ex-BNL singer, Steven Page! A younger, more vocally naive version, albeit.

The more upbeat 'Golden' is next, and as much as it tickles along nicely, isn't number four on the set list for no good "filler" reason! Ending this EP is 'Elizabeth,' definitely a personal recanting of something that happened in Russell's life - you can just tell. And, as much as I hate adding in vocal melting pots of reflection here, his voice now takes on that of Jason Mraz! Hey, whatever works, I guess.

But, my God, the boy is a poet: "I held my sparkler as I walked, Death was inevitable but nobody talked. We'd just forget love, We'd strike the match, And the fuse was life and the light was death." Genius, absolute frickin' genius!

All in all, this young, up-and-coming singer, songwriter and guitar-playing troubadour from UT has made quite a solid start to his recording career. [RT]