And yet she was no longer the love of his life. Richard's career was older than his marriage. But the previous three albums he had made were muddled. Two had sold poorly, leading to his record label dropping him. His last one had never been released. He was thirty-two and had no record contract. His career appeared to be in a long slide toward oblivion. The choices Thompson faced were nothing short of Hell. So he cut Shoot Out the Lights, an album about his own little inferno.
Shoot Out the Lights was the last album that Richard and Linda Thompson recorded together as husband and wife. It is a testament to the power of simple production and lyrical directness, yet behind those qualities its eight songs run through a gamut of deep emotion: despair, loss, fear, betrayal, indifference, and, ultimately, existential abandon.
Hayden Childs weaves the story of this astonishing record from the perspective of a man who is obsessed with it, a man who is living and reliving his own trip through Hell.
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