Richard & Linda Thompson - Shoot out the lights
One of the great breakup albums, this album was recorded just before the divorce of the husband and wife team. The album is a mixture of the rockier percussion filled songs of Richard and the slower folkier songs sung by Linda. Each of which is a nice contrast to each other.
The album starts off with the powerful 'Don't renege on our love' where Richard makes his feelings very clear. It follows with Linda's 'Walk on a wire' which sounds like her telling him how alone she feels and how detached they've become. She sounds particularly broken in this heart wrenching vocal.
Side two ends with another from Richard and another from Linda. Both similar to the first two. Richard sounds like an angry husband trying to save his family while Linda sounds like a very sad wife who sees no reason to stay.
Side two starts with a striking guitar filled song from Richard, the title track, 'Shoot out the lights'. He's hurting on the inside, he's on his own, its nighttime, he can't standthe day. Richard sings another before linda gets a look in on another beautiful song called 'Did she jump or was she pushed'. I wonder what that's about then.
The last song is the only obvious duet on the album, 'The wall of death'. While you do hear each other on the previous songs its here that they sing along together. In tone at least, it sounds like there is a certain amount of having come to terms with events. The music is somewhat less despairing and possibly more hopeful. Not happy, but willing to look ahead. The album ends off with the line, 'Let me take my chances on the wall of death'.
As usual with 4mwb, the sounds is very good. I don't find it very warm but its not particularly harsh. A lot of Richard Thompson's music to me, is a bit heavy on the drums. They carry a very steady beat with not much play by the drummer. They're usually quite prevalent in the mix. For me a little of him goes a long way. I love the first song but tire a bit quickly. Linda's songs I could listen to for a longer time. The variation between them is good and the combination of the two styles on the last song is perhaps most appealing of all. But there are several classics on this album.
Rolling Stone magazine has ranked it as #9 on its top 100 best rock albums, so here's a recommendation for you :) And this pressing is apparently the best sounding available.
Ther's a standard sleeve with an cardboard picture inner sleeve. No plastic or rice paper.
Richard & Linda Thompson - Shoot out the light
One of the great folk rock albums.