"On one hand you've got Richard Thompson the songwriter, who depicts frustrated love, spilled blood, and rank injustice with lacerating humor and sobering acuity," writes Bill Meyer. "On the other, there's Thompson the guitarist, whose intricate, lilting, harmonically agile acoustic picking and stinging electric leads (which sound like a hybrid of James Burton and a bagpiper) have been astonishing audiences since the late 60s, when he played on the first five albums by long-lived folk-rock combo Fairport Convention, stoking its brief flare of brilliance. Fairport's debut album came out 46 years ago this month, and in the intervening decades Thompson has settled into a sort of reliable craftsmanship as a writer of lyrics—but on his latest album, Electric, his guitar playing still strikes sparks."
Beets front man Juan Wauters is out on the road supporting his solo venture. "The songs on his debut solo album, N.A.P. North American Poetry, are as stripped-down and simple as anything by the Beets, both lyrically and musically," says Kevin Warwick. "But here Wauters acquires a new mystique—picture him in a vintage black-and-white photograph, sitting alone on a bus bench, only his guitar case in tow."