Friday, November 23, 2007

Erik's Random 10

"Burns Supper," off Richard Thompson's 1996 You? Me? Us? album is a really nice track. For some reason, this album did not really take off at all. In part, this is because it did not seem to be fully thought out. One disc is electric, the other acoustic. Two of the songs are performed on each disc. It was kind of like he couldn't decide what to do with it. But there are a lot of really first rate songs on the album. From the best I can tell, he plays almost none of them. On his recent 5 CD box set, the only song that appears is a good live version of "Put It There Pal." When I saw him a couple of months ago, it was one of the only albums he did not play anything from. This is too bad. "Burns Supper" is a good, pretty but also sad, ballad of the kind Thompson specializes in. "Dark Hand Over My Heart" is an excellent pop song, "No's Not a Word" is a creepy stalker song, which RT does really well. Another underrated song on that album is "Woods of Darney," which like "No's Not a Word" shows RT's weird dark side. This song is about a World War I soldier who takes the identity of his friend who was killed in France and then he goes back and hooks up with his dead friend's wife. I would certainly be happy if these songs became more central to Thompson's oeuvre, but I guess because the reviews on the album were not as great as he hoped, the project had kind of been forgotten about.

I don't know that I would recommend You? Me? Us? as the first Richard Thompson one should buy, but it is a very worthy piece of work.

1. Richard Thompson, Burns Supper
2. Reckless Kelly, Wretched Again
3. Drive-By Truckers, Goodbye
4. Don Cherry, Flute
5. Ken Orrick, It's Gonna Rain
6. Rosalie Sorrels, Brigham Young
7. Bob Wills, Faded Love
8. Townes Van Zandt, Waitin' Round to Die
9. Beck, Shake Shake Tambourine
10. Buddy Tabor, Thin Ice