Linda Thompson

"Versatile" is the perfect adjective for Linda Thompson; on her new album, the British folk legend works her way through a tasty mix of styles.

“Versatile” is the perfect adjective for Linda Thompson; on her new album, the British folk legend works her way through a tasty mix of styles.

The collection of rueful love songs spans folk traditional (“The Way I Love You”), and modern (the woozily erotic “Nice Cars”), grizzled, late night honky-tonk (“Do Your Best For Rock ‘N Roll”), early American balladry (“Katy Cruel”), swaying, melancholy pop (Rufus Wainwright’s “Beauty”), edges into Lucinda Williams territory with “Give Me A Sad Song” and a sternly sparse reading of Tom Waits and Kathleen Brennan’s soldier’s song, “Day After Tomorrow.” Something of a family affair, co-produced and mostly co-written with son Teddy (who also plays guitar), with songwriting and vocal contributions from daughter Kamila, and various McKeons, Muldars, Carthys and Wainwrights sitting in on backing vocals, Thompson’s gorgeous, knowing voice holds it all together; intimate yet magisterial, adding gravity to the lighter material and a skeptic’s raised eyebrow to its darker edges.

Linda Thompson

Rounder

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