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4.5 out of 5 stars25
4.5 out of 5 stars
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on 14 February 2000
Their final album together, and a masterpiece. After scrapping tracks produced by Jerry Rafferty, Richard & Linda re-recorded the entire album in a few days. Its got it all - anger, pain, misery, death, heartbreak, malice, backstabbing, falling, leaving, darkness. The darkness of the songs is reinforced by some of Thompson's most violent guitar and counterpointed by the beauty of Linda's vocals. If anyone tells you Richard & Linda are 'folk' singers, play them this. It makes Lennon's 'Plastic Ono Band' or Springsteen's 'Darkness at the Edge of Town' look like a sunny day in the country. However at the end, there is a glimmer of hope: "Let me take my chances on the Wall of Death". As the album ends with the cruching closing chords of Wall of Death, you too will be stunned by this album. Five stars? Should be Six.
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on 2 May 2005
This is probably the best of Richard and Linda Thompson's albums.
Each song is perfectly crafted and performed, with Linda's voice at its finest on tracks such as "Did She Jump Or Was She Pushed?" and Richard's guitar playing at its most visceral on the title track.
I had searched for some Richard Thompson albums after hearing a REM cover of "Wall of Death" (the last track on this CD). I was floored by the perfect structure of the song and delighted by the clever, effective lyrics. When I listened to Thompson's own work and the work produced with Linda Thompson I found that that consistently high level of craft, guile and subtlety was common throughout. A visciously sharp wit is revealed on occasion too.
If you've heard good reports on Richard & Linda Thomson and you're looking for a place to start, look no further. For Richard on his own, try Rumour and Sigh.
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on 10 January 2005
I will no doubt incur the wrath of many devoted fans by saying that this album, which is often hailed as one of the best of the 1980s, is to my mind just a little over-rated. It's great compared with much of the typical early 80s fare, undoubtedly, but in comparison with the best of Richard and Linda Thompson's work it doesn't quite make the grade for me. This is perhaps because as their partnership dissolved into acrimony, the empathy between the Thompsons declined, to the detriment of the music. As singers, they tend to be heard apart on this album, whereas in their best earlier work they complemented each other. It may also be because the mastering quality of this release is not in the same league as the recent Island remastered editions of the duo's first three albums - in fact in one song there is an odd edit which sounds as though half a bar has been cut out, which is unnerving for the listener. I am a devoted Thompsons fan, and value all their work, as well as Richard's prodigious solo output. However, I feel that the very best of Richard and Linda is contained in 'I want to see the bright lights tonight' and 'Pour down like silver' rather than 'Shoot out the lights'.
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on 20 November 2004
supreme guitar work - RT is the best I've heard in almost 50 years of listening - incredibly beautiful vocals and songs I wish I'd written. you don't need to read my review, just listen to this and melt!
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This is a very somber album with powerful songs about separation and love gone wrong. It contains some of Thompson’s most poetic lyrics and the playing is brilliant throughout. Don’t Renege On Our Love has a fast tempo and chugging rhythm, while Walking On A Wire, sung by Linda, is a slow, emotional ballad with spectacular guitar work. Man In Need has great harmonies and Just The Motion, another one with vocals by Linda, is a soulful ballad. Dark and brooding, the title track is a masterpiece of guitar and vocals. My personal favourite is the magnificent closing number Wall Of Death where the two voices blend poignantly on the most beautiful melody. Although Richard and Linda are considered folk singers, Shoot Out The Lights is definitely more of a rock album and as such ranks up there with rock’s greatest.
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on 24 February 2011
A classic album from Richard and Linda Thompson with standout tracks, "Walking On A Wire", "Wall Of Death" and "Shoot Out The Lights". This is one of their very best and is a necessary addition to any collection. Highly recommended!
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on 31 August 2011
I went to see RT recently and decided to dig out some of the old albums. I was so impressed with SOTL the I downloaded it. All the tracks are excellent but the title track and Walking on a Wire are outstanding.
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on 19 May 2016
Classic Richard and Linda Thompson. As you would expect high quality songs from beginning to end. Fantastic guitar from RT lovely evocative vocals from LT.
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on 2 December 2015
Excellent, much better than expected.
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on 12 April 2014
I bought this after hearing one track on the radio,it's just fantastic and timeless it seems,each time when you listen there is someThing else that you hear that you missed on previous plays.
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