Armchair Theatre (album)

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Armchair Theatre
Jeff Lynne-Armchair Theatre.jpg
Studio album by
Released12 June 1990 (UK)
2 July 1990 (US)
RecordedRaindirk at Posh Studios, England 1989–1990
GenreRock
Length36:41
LabelReprise
ProducerJeff Lynne
Jeff Lynne chronology
A Message from the Country – The Jeff Lynne Years 1968/1973
(1989)
Armchair Theatre
(1990)
Long Wave
(2012)
Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic4/5 stars[1]
Entertainment WeeklyB–[2]
Goldmine3/5 stars[3]
Los Angeles Times3/5 stars[4]
MusicHound3.5/5 stars[5]
Q3/5 stars[6]
Rolling Stone3/5 stars[6]

Armchair Theatre is the first solo album by Jeff Lynne, released in 1990.[7]

History[edit]

The album reunited Lynne with Electric Light Orchestra's keyboard player Richard Tandy and featured fellow Traveling Wilburys member George Harrison (both Harrison and the Wilburys were signed to Warner Bros. Records, parent of Reprise Records which released this album). Lynne wrote and recorded "Now You're Gone" as a tribute to his late mother.[citation needed] The album also features cover versions of two classics: "September Song" and "Stormy Weather".[7]

The songs "Every Little Thing" and "Lift Me Up" were released as singles both featuring non-album b-sides, "I'm Gone" from the former and "Borderline" and "Sirens" from the latter. Despite positive reviews the album became only a minor hit.

A remaster by Frontiers was released on 19 April 2013 in the UK, and on 23 April 2013 in the US, and included two bonus tracks, one of them being previously unreleased.[8] Additional bonus track was included in the Japanese re-release.

Track listing[edit]

All songs written by Jeff Lynne, except where noted.

No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."Every Little Thing" 3:41
2."Don't Let Go"Jesse Stone3:00
3."Lift Me Up" 3:36
4."Nobody Home" 3:51
5."September Song"Maxwell Anderson, Kurt Weill2:57
6."Now You're Gone" 3:57
7."Don't Say Goodbye" 3:09
8."What Would It Take" 2:40
9."Stormy Weather"Ted Koehler, Harold Arlen3:42
10."Blown Away"Lynne, Tom Petty3:29
11."Save Me Now" (A) 2:39
Total length:36:41
2013 remaster bonus tracks
No.TitleLength
12."Borderline" (Recorded 1989; previously unreleased version. Original version previously released as non-album track on "Lift Me Up" 12" and CD single.)2:24
13."Forecast" (Recorded 1989; previously unreleased song.)3:54
Total length:42:26
2013 remaster additional Japanese bonus track[9]
No.TitleLength
14."Strange Magic" (Live from Bungalow Palace)3:02
  • A ^ "Save Me Now" ends at minute 1:53. After 15 seconds of silence (1:53 - 2:08), an unusual whirring sound and seagull cawing are heard for 13 seconds. After the whirring sound there are 10 seconds of silence, followed by Jeff Lynne saying "Hey, it's still going y'know," and chimes ringing.

Personnel[edit]

  • Jeff Lynne – guitars, bass, piano, keyboards, autoharp, percussion, lead vocals, backing vocals; drums on #5 and bonus track #13
  • George Harrison – acoustic guitar on #1, 3 and 5; electric slide guitar on #3, 5 and 9; backing vocals on #1 and 3
  • Richard Tandy – acoustic guitar on #1 and 3; piano on #5 and 9; backing vocals on #2, 5, 9 and 10
  • Mette Mathiesen – drums on #1-4 and 6-9; percussion on #1, 2, and 6; backing vocals on #5, 9 and 10
  • Ringo Starr – drums on #10
  • Phil Hatton - backing vocals on #1-5, 7, 9 and 10
Additional musicians
  • Jim Horn – saxophones on #1 and 2
  • Hema Desai – operatic vocals on #1, classical Indian vocals on #6
  • Michael Kamen – string arrangements on #1 and 9
  • Jake Commander – backing vocals on #2, 5, 9 and 10
  • Dave Morgan – backing vocals on #3, 5, 9 and 10
  • Sireesh K. Lalwani – percussion on #3 and 6, violin on #6
  • Fateh Singh Gangani, Nellai D. Kanan, Vikram A. Patil – percussion on #3 and 6
  • Rita – saw on #5
  • Sheila Tandy – backing vocals on #5, 9 and 10
  • Ashit Desai – classical Indian vocals on #6
  • Del Shannon – backing vocals on #10

Charts[edit]

Chart 1990 Peak
position
Australian Albums (ARIA)[10] 35
Canada Top Albums/CDs (RPM)[11] 23
Dutch Albums (Album Top 100)[12] 44
German Albums (Offizielle Top 100)[13] 52
Norwegian Albums (VG-lista)[14] 7
Swedish Albums (Sverigetopplistan)[15] 8
UK Albums (OCC)[16] 24
US Billboard 200[17] 83

References[edit]

  1. ^ McDonald, Steven. "AllMusic review". AllMusic. Retrieved 8 July 2013.
  2. ^ Sandow, Greg (15 June 1990). "Armchair Theatre". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 4 August 2015.
  3. ^ Greenblatt, Mike (11 August 2014). "Reviews of Electric Light Orchestra's 'Live' and 'Zoom,' plus Jeff Lynne's 'Armchair Theatre'". Goldmine. Retrieved 4 August 2015.
  4. ^ Hochman, Steve (17 June 1990). "Album Review: *** Jeff Lynne 'Armchair Theatre' Warner Bros". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 4 August 2015.
  5. ^ Graff, Gary; Durchholz, Daniel (eds) (1999). MusicHound Rock: The Essential Album Guide. Farmington Hills, MI: Visible Ink Press. p. 383. ISBN 1-57859-061-2.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  6. ^ a b "Jeff Lynne – Armchair Theatre CD Album". CD Universe/Muze. Retrieved 4 August 2015.
  7. ^ a b Holden, Stephen (20 June 1990). "The Pop Life". The New York Times. Retrieved 1 September 2012.
  8. ^ "2013 TO BRING THREE MORE RELEASES FROM JEFF LYNNE AND ELO AS PART OF ELO'S 40TH ANNIVERSARY : elo". Elo.biz. Retrieved 19 February 2013.
  9. ^ "Armchair Theatre|HMV ONLINE". Hmv.co.jp. Retrieved 28 February 2013.
  10. ^ "Australiancharts.com – Jeff Lynne – Armchair Theatre". Hung Medien. Retrieved 11 November 2020.
  11. ^ "Top RPM Albums: Issue 1284". RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved December 25, 2020.
  12. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Jeff Lynne – Armchair Theatre" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved 11 November 2020.
  13. ^ "Offiziellecharts.de – Jeff Lynne – Armchair Theatre" (in German). GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved 11 November 2020.
  14. ^ "Norwegiancharts.com – Jeff Lynne – Armchair Theatre". Hung Medien. Retrieved 11 November 2020.
  15. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Jeff Lynne – Armchair Theatre". Hung Medien. Retrieved 11 November 2020.
  16. ^ "Official Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 11 November 2020.
  17. ^ "Jeff Lynne Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved 11 November 2020.