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Electric [Deluxe 2CD]

4.4 out of 5 stars 101 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

**DELUXE 2CD VERSION: Includes bonus disc with 7 bonus tracks**
Guitar and folk music legend Richard Thompson has a brand new studio album, Electric, produced by Buddy Miller. Thompson, named one of Rolling Stone Magazine s 20 Greatest Guitarists, brings a record full of gifted songwriting and virtuosic guitar playing. Electric was made at Buddy Miller s home studio in Nashville, TN. The record features Alison Krauss on the song "The Snow Leopard."
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 5, 2013)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: New West Records
  • ASIN: B00AJLHU3K
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (101 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #23,922 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By K. H. Orton VINE VOICE on February 5, 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
If the ambitious Dream Attic was a bit over the top and unwieldy for some, Thompson's latest is more back to basics. Title says it all, and it's been a while since Thompson's done an album with so many upbeat rockers. Well, "up-bleak" might be more apropos if you take the lyrics into consideration.

Thompson's guitar playing is in stellar form and his fingers never wander, stray or distract from the songs. And what a healthy batch they are.

Kicking off with the violent and lustful Stony Ground, Salford Sunday is a surprising follow up. The catchiest bed sit moper I've heard in ages; as toe tapping as it's tortured. Another major standout is Good Things Happen to Bad people which raises the roof while giving Iago a run for his jealousy. Another highlight is the absolutely gut-wrenching Another Small Thing In Her Favor. Further proof Thompson is up there with Dylan, Waits, and Van Morrison in the songwriting department.

I'm willing to bet not every track will knock it out of the ball park for even the most devout. I'd be surprised to hear any calls for Treadmill or Where's Home during a live show. But brooding, slow burners like My Enemy and the eerily yearning Snow Goose are guaranteed to keep you coming back for more. Powerful stuff. Speaking of which, Saving The Good Stuff For You ends Electric on a darkly wry but bleakly heartbreaking note. In other words, vintage Thompson.

As for the bonus disc, while well aware of the marketing ploy here, go for the "deluxe" version here. As you might expect, it's a mix of filler and killer (pun intended). I Found A Stray, Tic-Tac Man and Auldie Riggs are indispensable and would have taken the original album from memorably good to great.
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Format: Audio CD
Richard Thompson's latest album is another solid work from the master craftsman. His body of music, the tree of Thompson, grows ever more impressive with time. RT is deeply rooted in English and Celtic music, that is one of the secrets of his creative longevity. Going back to Fairport Convention, his music has never been trendy or completely of its time. It is a never-ending stream of variations on old themes, including love, compassion, jealousy, lust, stupidity, vanity, greed, exploitation, and violence, and draws on the rich vein of song forms as well.

ELECTRIC, produced by Buddy Miller, is an excellent *album.* That is one of the levels of Thompson's craft -- he is a master singer, songwriter, and guitarist, and he also knows how to construct an album, a craft that may be dying with the rise of MP3s but one that will continue to be valued by those of us who grew up in the glory days of Albums. Every song does not have to be equally powerful on a well-constructed album, but every song has to contribute something to the overall mood and flow. That is certainly the case with ELECTRIC. While there is not a song here that I am inclined to play over and over like "I'll Never Give It Up" from Sweet Warrior (2007) or "Haul Me Up," "Demons In Her Dancing Shoes," "Big Sun Falling In the River" and "Sidney Wells" from Dream Attic (2010), there is not a single song I am inclined to skip.

ELECTRIC opens with the rough-and-ready Celtic stomp of "Stony Ground," a cautionary tale about Old Man Morris whose lust lands him in the gutter "dripping with blood.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I have been a fan of Richard Thompson since the late 60s, and have followed him through his career, both via recording and live performances (which are always better than the recordings, IMHO). As a guitarist, Richard is in the top strata. His chops are amazing. As a songwriter, he's written many, many great songs. It's still too early for me to say whether any of them are on this CD. He recycles motifs and licks from earlier albums in many of the songs, but perhaps with a few more listens I'll change my mind. My first impression was that this is a good, not great album. That being said, a lot of professional reviewers, as well as a coterie of like-minded long-term fans like me, have given it higher marks than I have. Definitely worth a listen. I actually like some of the songs on the bonus disc better than the basic album.
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. . . I could have stood a little more of the Master's incendiary guitar work. I know Mr. Thompson values economy - but if you name your album "Electric" - and you have the guitar pedigree this guy does - you don't need to scrimp on the guitar playing. I bought this thinking I'd have to have my eyebrows penciled-in after the first listening, but no such fireworks. It'd be nice just once to hear Richard take his on-stage guitar freak into the studio with him for a good, long (double-CD!) workout.

The songs are uniformly excellent - just what you'd expect - and I like the production; it's loose and open.
Surprisingly, the bonus disc has some of the set's best material. So . . . if you're gonna shell out for this one, I'd advise to go for the deluxe.

Definitely not a bad record by any stretch - heck, no Richard Thompson work falls into that category - I just wish there had been more guitar freakery, complete with eyebrow-erasing solos.
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