12 Songs, 41 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Teddy Thompson’s fifth album, 2011’s Bella, is his most streamlined to date. Produced by David Kahne (the Bangles, Wilco) and backed by Thompson’s road band and special guest, dad Richard, Bella is arguably the most accessible of Teddy’s catalog. Not that he’s ever been anything more complicated than a sincere singer-songwriter, but Kahne brings the young Thompson to center stage with arrangements that range from brilliant power-pop (“Looking for a Girl”) to carefully orchestrated baroque miniatures (“Over and Over,” “Home”). Thompson’s sounding a bit frustrated with his love life — “The One I Can’t Have” walks down the street with the feeling that maybe his prowess isn’t always what he thinks. (Ladies are likely to disagree). Thompson also sounds remarkably more like his dad than ever. He has better range (thanks to mother Linda) but he finds the same frustrated yowl to express his concerns. The extra ache in “Gotta Have Someone” is particularly affecting; sometimes, good genes help make convincing music.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Teddy Thompson’s fifth album, 2011’s Bella, is his most streamlined to date. Produced by David Kahne (the Bangles, Wilco) and backed by Thompson’s road band and special guest, dad Richard, Bella is arguably the most accessible of Teddy’s catalog. Not that he’s ever been anything more complicated than a sincere singer-songwriter, but Kahne brings the young Thompson to center stage with arrangements that range from brilliant power-pop (“Looking for a Girl”) to carefully orchestrated baroque miniatures (“Over and Over,” “Home”). Thompson’s sounding a bit frustrated with his love life — “The One I Can’t Have” walks down the street with the feeling that maybe his prowess isn’t always what he thinks. (Ladies are likely to disagree). Thompson also sounds remarkably more like his dad than ever. He has better range (thanks to mother Linda) but he finds the same frustrated yowl to express his concerns. The extra ache in “Gotta Have Someone” is particularly affecting; sometimes, good genes help make convincing music.

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