Saturday, September 8, 2012

Bob Dylan: Tempest (2012)

Metacritic's aggregation of reviews of Bob Dylan's more recent albums:

Love & Theft = 93%
Modern Times = 89%
Together Through Life = 76%
Christmas in the Heart = 62%
Tempest = 84%

When reading about new Dylan albums, it may be best to lop off at least 10% of the average reviewer's rating to account for respect, awe and a fear of blacklisting by the Dylan camp. That said, Tempest proves that the blood is still dancing in Dylan`s veins. Sure, this isn't exactly Jack Palance dropping and giving the Academy twenty one-handed push-ups but it`s still more vigorous then we`ve any right to expect, especially after the not-as-bad-as-we`d-feared Christmas in the Heart and the worse-than-we`d-feared Together Through Life.  For a late career album,  Tempest, solidly engineered by Scott Litt, is a piece of some heft, akin to Modern Times (overpraised upon its release but undervalued now) though it may not be a match for the wit and fire of `Love and Theft`.
``Duquesne Whistle`` is the first new Dylan composition worthy of his name since the highlights of Modern Times. `Narrow Way`is a nice reminder that Dylan can still roll out some nice lines (``I can`t work up to you - you`ll surely have to work down to to me someday`) while recycling the blues. We do get some of that romantic crooner material, like `Soon After Midnight`` but that`s counterbalanced by the re-emergence of the angry Dylan here in fire-spiting songs like, `Pay in Blood` (`I pay in blood but not my own``) and ``The Angel`` (`He`s a gutless ape with a worthless mind`). The oft-discussed Titanic-themed song `Tempest`, while intriguing is just too damn long at forty-five chorus-less verses in just over fourteen minutes to not drag the album down a little. The other historical song, `Roll on, John` just seems to be mashing up words and ideas about John Lennon to limited effect. The last two tracks aside, Dylan`s delivered an album that adds to his body of work

It might be a bit generous but a 74% and a ``recommended for mid-level Dylan-ites`` seems fitting.

Let us know what you think of the latest Dylan work in the COMMENTS section.

Support Bob Dylan






  1. At least he's still consistent with the crappy album covers.

  2. I think this one is uglier then TTL and that one was pretty terrible. Someone`s art director need firing.

  3. related release: Michel Montecrossa’s non-violence topical music video 'Duquesne Whistle' presenting his version of Bob Dylan's song.

    Michel Montecrossa about the ‘DUQUESNE WHISTLE‘ song & movie:
    “I sang Bob Dylan’s song ‘DUQUESNE WHISTLE’ from his album 'Tempest' and made a multilayered Non-Violence Topical Cinema-Verité and Consciousness-Stream Fusion-Movie to position my performance effectively
    stimulating in the futuristic virtual and organic context which is my natural artistic homeland. “ - the video is released alongside the 'Michel & Bob Dylan Fest 2012' Album Set

  4. I like it but then I liked "Self portrait" except for the live tracks.

    1. I do won Self-Portrait but i can't go quite as far as to say I genuinely like it.

  5. The album cover's not Dylan-worthy. Strange video, with the violence. So how did Dylan get a posse like that, and is the platinum-haired babe carrying an abacus? I like that the pony-tailed babe drives a Gremlin, must be a reference to George Romney.

    1. Bob's still in the tank for Obama ;)


Thanks for clicking the COMMENTS link.
Now that you're here,I should mentions that
without reader feedback blogs slowly wither and die