I haven't paid much attention to Richard Thompson's music for the last twenty years so I bought this album to check out his new material.
Great music, but really depressing lyrics. The first track is an upbeat rocker musically but the lyric is about an elderly man in lust with a younger woman. The woman isn't interested in his attention and old man ends up being beaten to a pulp and left bloodied and seriously injured on a sidewalk by two of the woman's young friends. Not exactly uplifting stuff.
Richard Thompson has clearly gone through a marriage breakup recently and much of the album is devoted to songs about his deteriorated relationship with his ex. Great music, but if you're inclined toward depression, this album is not going to help you see the bright side of life.
On the upside, Richard Thompson is a great guitar player and that really comes through on this album. He also has an interesting singing voice and, although the lyrics of most songs on this album aren't exactly upbeat, Thompson's voice and guitar make them worthwhile listening.
If you're thinking of buying this CD, get the 2CD bonus version. The second CD is worth having.
Bottom line: this is really good album musically. Thompson's guitar prowess and vocal skills are front and center. But the lyrics......well, let's just say that if you're looking for something upbeat and happy, most of this CD isn't going to give you that.