New Billy Bragg, otherworldly Richard Thompson

On the show this week – some tracks from the first new BILLY BRAGG album in five years ‘Tooth And Nail’, released in a variety of formats only a few days ago.  See http://www.billybragg.co.uk/toothandnail.php for more details.

The new RICHARD THOMPSON CD ‘Electric’ has been featured over the last few weeks, but we now turn our attention to  ‘Cabaret Of Souls’, quite a different kind of work altogether.  In his own words: “This piece began life as a commission for the International Society of Bassists to write something featuring the double bass. I managed to forget that they asked for a running time of 6 minutes! Being a songwriter, the beast naturally enough, grew into a song cycle, and then into something with elements of theater, which is how it is now presented, not quite a song cycle, an opera, a musical, a musical play or a bass concerto. A folk oratorio? A folkatorio? Perhaps better left unlabelled. -RT”  

The premise: WELCOME TO THE UNDERWORLD – GRAB A MICROPHONE  The audience seems to have passed from life into death, and find themselves at a reception for the freshly deceased. The Keeper of the Underworld likes to welcome the new intake with some entertainment, so he drags reluctant souls out of the darkness to sing. After each song the Keeper and his assistants sing their own short song of contempt for human foibles. As the humans yearn for the sweetness of life, the jaded Keepers contemplate torture as a better way of passing eternity.”  More details at http://www.richardthompson-music.com/cabaretofsouls.asp

www.youtube.com/watch?v=dXso0QoEYog

 

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