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Rumor and Sigh

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Editors’ Notes

Though British folk-rock legend Richard Thompson's hefty discography overflows with great albums, this 1991 outing was where all his varied gifts came together to make for his most definitive release since parting with his wife and singing partner Linda Thompson in the early '80s. With überproducer Mitchell Froom at the helm, Thompson is in top form in all aspects of his "triple threat" status as a singer, songwriter, and guitarist. "Read About Love" bears enough lyrical barbs and sophisticated pop hooks to evoke Elvis Costello, while his solo acoustic "1952 Vincent Black Lightning" eventually became a modern folk standard. Thompson's prodigious gifts as a guitar stylist leap out from tracks like the low-key "Mystery Wind" and the uproarious rave-up "Mother Knows Best" alike. And on every track, his gravitas-laden baritone rings with all the love, pain, and laughter his life has known. So do the songs, which range from the lighthearted record-collector's plaint "Don't Sit on My Jimmy Shands" to the heartbroken (and heartbreaking) "I Misunderstood."

Customer Reviews

Still great.

One of his best. It is an album that bears replay after replay.


Born: April 3, 1949 in Notting Hill, London, England

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

For years, Richard Thompson resided in relative obscurity, while at the same time garnering vast critical praise for his magnificent guitar work and the dark wit and richness of his extraordinary songwriting. A founding member of the seminal British folk-rock group Fairport Convention, he remained with the band for five studio albums — Fairport Convention (1968), What We Did on Our Holiday (released as Fairport Convention in the U.S.) (1968), Unhalfbricking (1969), Liege and Lief (1969), and...
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