earshot Magazine Review

By Allison Brown
!earshot Magazine, January 12, 2010

Lightning might strike only once in the same place, but on Karyn Ellis’ new release “Even Though The Sky Was Falling”, sparks fly on all ten songs. Melodically unconventional, Karyn leaves no note unturned as she plunges and weaves through the full spectrum of each song, bringing the ear to unanticipated, yet infectiously tuneful terrain. Karyn’s rich cinnamon vocals sail comfortably atop a frothy instrumentation highlighted by horns artfully arranged by Brian Kobayakawa supported by Don Kerr’s intricate production architecture. Dangerously dancing with twinkly elements like plucked cello, toy piano, banjo, children’s choir and glockenspiel, Kerr and Ellis bravely avoid oversweetening the record by creating a balanced orchestra that does not overshadow the melody or content. Karyn draws the listener close with deeply personal and illustrative expressions of joy, fear, loneliness, beauty and nostalgia that translate her sincere feeling in each song. Lyrically creative, “Beauty” is made up entirely of simile – some which makes you think – “Like A Shoelace Fills A Shoe”, “Like The Finder Fills The View” – the song’s entrance note begins with almost audible pulses that explode into a flurry of horns, stopping abruptly as Karyn takes to the sonic stage to present the song’s playful bliss. With a hint of heaviness, Karyn borrows Joni Mitchell’s map of Canada, -missing the drawn faces-, as she sighs through “Not Looking For Love”. The sky might be falling, but Karyn’s ten celestial tunes on “Even Though The Sky Was Falling”, her second full-length release, are sure to send this songstress’s star on a rapid rise.