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Richard Thompson: Dream Attic

Richard Thompson
Dream Attic

Proper Records
August 31, 2010

“Dream Attic has the brio that matches any of Thompson’s past few studio albums.” – Uncut

“Almost impossible to replicate in the studio, this is the level of energy and conviction which drives the album as newly buoyant Thompson discovers his second wind. Scintillating.” Mojo

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No artist to emerge in the second half of the ’60s has gone on to have a more productive and vital career than Richard Thompson. The England-born, L.A.-based artist has amassed an astounding body of work comprising more than 40 albums, containing artfully shaped material that seamlessly and expressively integrates traditional and contemporary modes. And Thompson is among the most distinctive of guitar virtuosos, capable of breathtaking drama and sublime delicacy, prompting Rolling Stone to hail him as “a perennial dark-horse contender for the title of greatest living rock guitarist.”

While still a teenager, Thompson founded and led Fairport Convention, which was to British folk-rock what the Byrds were to the idiom’s American equivalent. Thompson’s solo albums, beginning with 1972’s Henry the Human Fly, reveal an artist of unparalleled dimension who has followed his muse as boldly as fellow iconoclast Neil Young. The series of albums Thompson recorded during the 1970s and early ’80s with his then-wife Linda, culminating in the devastating Shoot Out the Lights (1982), charted the arc of a relationship with unstinting candor. During the last two decades, he’s fired off a steady stream of critically acclaimed electric and acoustic solo albums, most recently 2007’s Sweet Warrior, whose centerpiece was “Dad’s Gonna Kill Me,” an unsettlingly vivid narrative using the actual language of soldiers in the Iraq War, which stands as the mother of all modern-day protest songs.

Instead of recording new songs in a studio, Thompson made demo recordings, rehearsed the songs with his band and then recorded the new material live on a two week tour of the Western USA.

The album was assembled from these live recordings. No studio overdubs were done. Each track on the finished album is an entire, unedited live performance of the song.

On its release, Dream Attic entered the British top 20 for album sales.

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