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4.6 out of 5 stars89
4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 12 March 2013
I don't think Richard Thompson could make a bad record if he tried - but he can obviously make very good ones. I was particularly looking forward to this record as it teams Thompson with one of the finest cottage industries in America - Buddy Miller's production. I wasn't disappointed; Miller has been able to bring out a fine electric performance from Thompson and his musicians while still retaining his folk roots and the subtle quality of his guitar playing - with the guitar playing well to the fore.
This is as good a set of songs as Thompson has produced in recent years; "Salford Sunday" is an immediate pleasure but there are plenty of songs here that will grow on the listener as their subtle beauty becomes more obvious. "Electric" is an album from a fine musician at the top of his game; possibly his best since "Rumour & Sigh" and one I'd expect to see in the frame for various awards.
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on 23 February 2013
This is quite possibly his best album since Rumour and Sigh. On many records there is a tendancy to include a couple of tracks that would be better left in the studio. I thought money shuffle from the last album fell into this category - and Sally B from this one until I heard it live and realised it just needs to be cranked up loud! Some tracks such as Stony Ground would easily make a best of. This is Richard Thompson at his best, and if you can catch him live. Michael Jerome must be one of the outstanding drummers of our time - and that Thompson is one of the best guitarists goes without saying. Some tracks take a while to grow but all are worth the wait
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 17 March 2013
Eichard Thompson is one of the world's greatest singer/songwriter's, and tainl one of the most creative and awesome guitarists there has been. He produces incredibly good albums consistently. This new one 'Electric', is amazing throughout. Sure RT's roots have been folk, but he's moved beyond that basic format as in this new album of songs, produced in Buddy Miller's Studio we get songs fom many types of music. The opening up beat,'Stony Ground', the simply beautiful 'Salford Sunday', an absolute RT classic, the three piece band on this song shows why Richard went for a trio over a larger band, each instrument is clear and the production shows the quality of those on this session. Track three's 'Sally B', much more in the traditional RT style but still full of new ideas, and like all of his songs it contains brilliant lyrics. We could talk for ages of every wonderful song on this latest production but you need to hear it, enjoy the treasures filling this very exiting cake of music. RT is a truely great artist in any field of modern music. The album contasins 11 songs, but the de lux version contains another 7 as well, and the first four of this are again of the highest quality, the other three are studio versions of pieces of songs he did on the 1000 Years OPf Popular Music Tour, so are a very welcome and enjoyable bonus, to an absolutely first class set. If you've for some reason not heard RT's music, or don't have one of his many albums over the years, this is a very good place to start. But be warned hear this and you'll be seaching for the rest.
One point nice to hear Alison Krauss's voice on 'The Snow Goose', and what a stunning song this is and again so beautifully played.I'll just mention in closing the drummer Michael Jerome, one of the finest in music, not only plays with Rt's band but I met him when on another tour with John Cale. He and bassist Taras Prodaniuk ate the root of the trio here nand are absolutely superb throughout.
This will without any doubt be in my albums of the year, it really is that good, no more than that, it's music of the highest and most enjoyable quality.
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on 15 April 2013
I've followed Richard's work for 40 years (gulp!) and continue to look forward to his new releases with the sort of interest that is confident in his ability to write and deliver songs with an edge. "Electric" sustains this interest, delivering a collection of worthwhile material that is never dull and has some songs that are destined to be added to his collection of classics. Although not on a par with some of his classic albums from earlier in his career (my personal favourites are Shoot Out The Lights, Hand Of Kindness and Across A Crowded Room) the collection shows him on blistering form with some of his best material of the last ten years. Stand out tracks for me are Straight And Narrow and Another Small Thing In Her Favour.
If you haven't listened to one of Richard's albums for a while, buy this one and see that he can still hack it (and then try Sweet Warrior too!).
Oh, and it's worth buying the version with the bonus disc for 7 additional tracks, 4 brand-new and 3 that have had some very limited circulation before. Stand-out of these for me is The Tic-Tac Man.
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on 11 March 2013
As some sensible reviewers have said - this is a good, but not a great Richard Thompson album. It does not compare favourably with the likes of Hand Of Kindness, Across A Crowded Room or Daring Adventures, but it is still a good RT album; and as such is in a different league to most other artists in popular music. RT continues to write excellent songs and play superb guitar, but on this album, there is a problem.

The problem is production. The sound is very thick and foggy in the mid range that renders some of RT's great guitar almost unlistenable. I am afraid that Buddy Miller and his more popular counterpart T Bone Burnett are very much in vogue; but very much overrated. They seem to think that finding an analogue-type sound is the sort of thing that the critics want to hear ; and hence get themselves another financial commission. On this evidence, BM (& TBB) need to get their ears syringed. The production detracts from the song's melody and presence; and the sort of detail you need in an RT song is just not discernable. I found exactly the same evidence in TBB's production of Diana Krall's Glad Rag Doll album, which has resulted in the worst recording of her career. Where Buddy Miller has gone wrong is that he has tried to produce a "sound" for RT which has simply backfired. He should look to the transparency of RT's best producers - namely Joe Boyd and Mitchell Froom, where their production is sympathetic and non-intrusive. And clear.

The best example I can offer is that I saw RT tour this album just a few days ago, and the song Stuck On The Treadmill demonstrated fine lead guitar and bass interplay, which just doesn't happen on this recording. The mix should be upfront and punchy (as it was live), rather than drenched in aural greyness.

There may well be a couple of RT potential classics on this record (Salford Sunday, My Enemy), but it's all too difficult trying to find them through this audio fog provided by Buddy Miller.
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on 4 April 2013
I have grown up with Richard Thompson. To mimic an RT lyric (albeit poorly) ,
"We've grown up together - apart;
Your music is lodged in my heart;
Your lyrics confounding;
Your playing outstanding;
I stand here in awe at your Art! "
So yes, I am a fan. I saw RT play last month in the UK, after buying 'Electric', and what a superb show it was, and so too the album. There are tracks here that will sit in your head for months and years to come; some of his greatest - and, yes, he has dozens in the back catalogue already. Some are heavy metal; his encore included Hey Joe, and was wonderful, but the set also has acoustic folk numbers, showing how RT has been the original driver of the British folk-rock movement. Other tracks show RT's subtle, added value songwriting - in my opinion he is the UK's. best singer/songwriter. Some tracks have just magical lyrics coupled with. his wondrous guitar playing. I love the man and this album. It is most highly recommended.
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on 25 March 2013
Someone in the telegraph review section said 'turgid' . Pardon?? there is a wealth of goodies here. I can see 'floor spotters' at folk clubs adopting Salford Sunday for starters. Production values are excellent , A nice 'warm' sound even from c.d. sources. Tic Tac man on the bonus disc is another one that could find itself into the folk clubs. Has Thompson been listening to R V Willliams I wonder- because the reprise of Audie Riggs Dance on the bonus disc literally drips with R.V.W's approach to lushness. The instant hit though is 'Will you Dance , Charlie boy'', a full blown rocker - with plenty of Thompson's trade mark string bending. - again the sound on this track is very full, drum and bass are very much part of the sound, rather than being thrown at you . My own busy playing schedule has meant I have only managed a couple of listens as yet. This will be altered when I have a free weekend ... This is an album that will grow on you...excellent.
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on 23 May 2013
This double album, the second CD featuring bonus tracks, was an excellent follow up of Dream Attic. His electric guitar is awsome. The bonus tracks on the second CD are more countryfied being influenced by Nashville. I like country rock so was delighted. The first CD was more electric and a continuation of Dream Attic.
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on 8 March 2013
This man is the last of his generation, apart from Robert Plant who Consistently deliver an outstanding set of new songs every couple of years,
Long may it continue
Those who haven't should check him out
By the way in concert he is even better
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on 25 February 2013
Never been a huge RT fan to be honest then I heard a little of dream attic and was hooked. What a guitarist. Great lyrics and a tight thumping band. Yes I may be too old to use cliches but some of the guitar style was almost Rory Gallaghesque. Perhaps what I most enjoyed was that Mr Thompson can switch from rocking out yet soulful songs Stuck on a Treadmill to the wistful Salford Sunday all in a breath. My Enemy is a great defiant song beautifully delivered. I have yet to find a filler on this CD - even the bonus disc works well - Tic Tac man is great fun - and we all know how useful bonus discs usually are ! Any way, I would hugely suggest you grab a listen - I'm off to see him play this week and can barely wait
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