Randy Thompson 'Collected' - Jackpot

Back in 2004 Randy Thompson released his album That's Not Me. The title track was a most powerful song of denial. It is also included on this collection of previously recorded songs with a trio of new songs. One of those is the aforementioned That's Not Me, still a powerful statement in its new incarnation. But Thompson is more than just one song as this collection testifies. This is robust roots rock, delivered with heart and muscle. Thompson has distinctive and compelling voice that is tinged with experience and regret. Behind that voice these songs are delivered with a conviction and forcefullness that belies the fact that they span some thirteen years. Produced by Thompson and his lead guitarist Garrick Alden the sound is one that cuts through and stays in the mind. Thompson is also a good writer writing and co-writing the majority of the songs here. This is not cutting edge alt-country rather it is well-performed music that sits left of the mainstream and in earlier times should have made more impression than it actually did. The Sound Of The Rain actually hit the Top 40 as a single. Other memorable songs include the opening track Songbird, his adaption of Goin' Down To Lynchburg Town, which is a bluesy slide-guitar workout or Heart Of Stone, a more countryfied songs with steel guitar and twanging guitar. His version of Utah Philips' Rock, Salt and Nails features the legendary Don Helms on steel on an slow, atmospheric and evocative take of the song. Wearin' Blue sounds musically like a Guitar Town-era Steve Earle song but instead topped by Thompson's familiar vocal tones. Another cover is Molly & Tenbrooks a tale of horses racing to destiny, recorded by Bill Monroe in the past, but not like this. The album closes with a new song Bring On Down The Rain another tale of frustrated love delivered with brooding fuzz-tone guitar that captures the song's sense cautious hope. Collected is an ideal way to get introduced to the music of Randy Thompson, it's not clever or media cool rather it's appeal is to those who loved roots-rock in the late 80s and early 90s, or who just like their Americana delivered with a rockin' punch that still has it's place today.