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RICHARD THOMPSON —ACOUSTIC RARITIES (BEESWING)

http://www.richardthompson.com 

 

Acoustic Rarities follows Richard Thompson’s Acoustic Classics Vol.11 as he performs an eclectic selection of songs. Some of the material originally featured on albums when he was with Fairport Convention (1970) or recorded with Linda Thompson (1974 –1975).

 

Others are previously unreleased tunes, not only by Thompson but anyone else. The collection starts with Thompson in commanding mood, and something of a hurry in the form of the unreleased “What If”; and with it soon followed by a dark, evocative tale previously recorded by Blair Dunlop, “Seven Brothers” that offers a power and clarity (both lyrically, and regards his forceful playing) that's long been a trademark of the folk master. Easing his foot off the pedal he follows it with “Rainbow Over The Hill” (Albion Band), and on placing a dark sombre edge to the music Linda and his “Never Again” enjoys some additional box playing. Of a stripped-down presentation “I Must Have A March” weaves effortlessly in and out of moods as folk of old (and cabaret stage show) is revisited.

 

Better still he revisits a song from his 1972 album, Henry The Human Fly by way of the roving “Poor Ditching Boy”; warmed in accordion etc and with an adventuress edge it lifts the album! “Alexander Graham Bell” not surprisingly contains more of the cabaret stage show mentioned above, and I hasten to add some classy jazz swing guitar. Tasty.

 

Accompanied and not for the one and only occasion Thompson has some help on vocals on “Sloth”, and it works perfectly. For it cushions his earthy / sometimes abrasive leaning tones. It features some picking too. A previously unreleased “Push And Shove” comes out the traps in explosive fashion, and though lacking the finesse and beauty of “End Of The Rainbow” (originally on Richard & Linda Thompson album I Want To See The Bright Lights Tonight) it is the business. While the wondrous, and most soothing in every department “She Played Right Into My Hands” is a (previously unreleased) treasure if ever was one! For a song stout as an old English oak he tenders a cover of “Poor Will And The Jolly Hangman”, and though it isn’t a happy song the playing warms the heart.  

 

                                                            Maurice Hope   

 

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May 2018

1
John Prine
67 pts.
The Tree of Forgiveness
Oh Boy Records
JJC,MB,SP,RM
2
Levi Parham
58 pts.
It's All Good
Continental Records
CRS,JB,TK
3
Jeb Barry and the Pawn Shop Saints
55 pts.
Texas, etc...
DollyRocker
HDB,CVL,DHO
4
Michael McDermott
54 pts.
Out From Under
Continental Song City
JDO,LK,BK
5
Sam Morrow
48 pts.
Concrete and Mud
Forty Below Records
MA,JBO,HB
6
Caleb Caudle
39 pts.
Crushed Coins
Cornelius Chapel Records
 
7
Western Centuries
36 pts.
Songs From The Deluge
Free Dirt Records
MF
8
Carter Sampson
34 pts.
Lucky
Continental Song City
 
9
Charley Crockett
30 pts.
Lonesome as a Shadow
Son of Davy/30 Tigers
 
10
Courtney Marie Andrews
28 pts.
May Your Kindness Remain
Loose Music
JV
11
Ed Romanoff
27 pts.
The Orphan King
Pinerock Records
 
 
Joan Baez
27 pts.
Whistle Down The Wind
Proper Records
HD
 
Pharis and Jason Romero
27 pts.
Sweet Old Religion
Lula Records
SZ,LM
14
Gretchen Peters
24 pts.
Dancing With The Beast
Proper Records
KG
 
Old Crow Medicine Show
24 pts.
Volunteer
Columbia Records
GF
 
Will Stewart
24 pts.
County Seat
Cornelius Chapel Records
 
17
Ben Reel
22 pts.
Land Of Escape
B REEL Records
GC,FC
 
Birds Of Chicago
22 pts.
Love In Wartime
Signature Sounds
 
 
Emily Herring
22 pts.
Gliding
Eight 30 Records
RST,RH
20
Jenny van West
21 pts.
Happiness To Burn
Independent
PJ,FS,JJ
 
Mary Gauthier
21 pts.
Rifles And Rosary Beads
In the Black Records
 
22
Sarah Shook & The Disarmers
20 pts.
Years
Bloodshot Records
FCE
23
David Starr
19 pts.
South And East
Independent
HM
24
Cold Tone Harvest
18 pts.
After You
Independent
 
25
Grant Peeples
17 pts.
Settling Scores vol. 2
Continental

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