Posts Tagged ‘Pour Down Like Silver’

Richard and Linda Thompson

Richard and Linda Thompson’s early recordings together have attained an almost mythical status and their first three acclaimed Island Records classics will now be available again on vinyl from September 11th through UMC/Island. “I Want To See The Bright Lights Tonight” (1974), “Hokey Pokey” (1975) and “Pour Down Like Silver” (1975) have been pressed on 180 gram vinyl and will come with a Download Code. These seminal works, ground-breaking at the time, have influenced generations of artists and firmly established Richard and Linda Thompson as major figures on the British folk scene.

Richard and Linda Thompson: I Want To See The Bright Lights

Recorded in May 1973, but not released until 1974 due to an international oil shortage, I Want To See The Bright Lights Tonight is a dark and eclectic affair. Richard and Linda share vocals and many of the album’s twelve tracks would become firm fan favourites, including: ‘When I Get To The Border’, ‘Calvary Cross’, ‘We Sing Hallelujah’  and ‘The End of The Rainbow’, ‘Down Where The Drunkards Roll’,  ‘Has He Got A Friend For Me?’, ‘The Great Valerio’ and the title track. Now considered a classic album, it did little to trouble the charts on its original release but was very well received by the music press. Geoff Brown of Melody Maker proclaimed: “Richard Thompson is… the most accomplished guitarist in this land… He’s written some masterful songs, here and Linda, has performed them as perfectly as we’ve a right to expect”.

Despite now being considered a Classic Album, sales of ‘I Want To See The Bright Lights Tonight’ were modest and did little to trouble chart. It was, however, very well received by the music press: “Richard Thompson is… the most accomplished guitarist in this land… He’s written some masterful songs, here and Linda, has performed them as perfectly as we’ve a right to expect”. Geoff Brown – Melody Maker

“These are songs which are going to be sung, and sung and sung. Not just heard by Richard and Linda, but by you, me, everybody. They have the mark of greatness upon them” Karl Dallas – Folk Review

Richard and Linda Thompson: Hokey Pokey

Richard and Linda’s 2nd LP from 1974 is now pressed on 180gram vinyl and contains a Download Code. Released in 1975, ‘Hokey Pokey’ is a much jollier release than its predecessor, ’I Want To See The Bright Lights Tonight’. Richard always envisaged Hokey Pokey’ as “a music-hall influenced record”. He was a big fan of Harry Lauder and Gracie Fields, and this inspiration can be seen in the Victorian style cover by Shirt Sleeve Studio, and is audible on the title track, “”Hokey Pokey”” and also ‘Georgie On A Spree’.

A mixture of darkly comic songs like “Smiffy’s Glass Eye” and the more world weary nature of ‘I’ll Regret It All In The Morning” and “A Heart Needs A Home”. There are also more sombre songs such as ‘The Egypt Room” which Richard described as “half way between The Coasters ‘Little Egypt’, George Formby, and Dickens by way of Patricia Highsmith”.

Also released in 1975, Richard and Linda’s third LP Pour Down Like Silver became known as ‘The Sufi album’ due to Richard’s recent conversion to Islam. It is a more restrained and spartan album compared to its lusher sounding predecessors and contains some of Richard’s most beautiful songs including ‘For Shame Of Doing Wrong’, ‘Beat The Retreat’ and ‘Dimming Of The Day’, with ‘Hard Luck Stories’ probably the most musically upbeat song on the album.

Richard and Linda Thompson: Pour Down Like Silver

The record was warmly received with Rolling Stone observing: “Pour Down Like Silver is the kind of album that makes listening to music worthwhile, a record of such rare beauty and scope that one honestly feels privileged to hear it.” And Angus MacKinnon of the NME concluded that:  “through its exploration of extreme disillusionment, ‘Pour Down Like Silver’ remains a considerable and deeply moving achievement”.

Artist’s website: https://www.richardthompson-music.com/