tue 26/10/2021

Bob Dylan

Out of the shadows: Dylan’s Eighties reappraised

Dylan’s 1980s weren’t great in terms of critical acclaim. As an emerging new fan, I knew that first hand from the scathing reviews accorded Shot of Love by the British music press when it was released in the summer of 1981, it seemed about as...

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Album: Standing in the Doorway - Chrissie Hynde Sings Bob Dylan

The release into a world in lockdown of Bob Dylan’s first original album in almost a decade caught everyone by surprise last year. Rough and Rowdy Ways drew widespread and universal praise. Its coming was heralded by a single, “Murder Most Foul”, a...

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Shadow Kingdom: The Early Songs of Bob Dylan review - noir settings for classic numbers

What is the Shadow Kingdom and how do you gain access to it? In Bob Dylan’s case, it may be found in the film noir classics of his birth – 1941’s The Maltese Falcon onward – and it’s those noir settings, artfully condensed and reduced to a signature...

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Tangled Up in Blue: Bob Dylan turns 80

In May 1981, a new-minted music graduate newly embarked on a career in journalism, I was pleased as punch to secure a commission from Capital Radio. Forever Young: Dylan at 40 was broadcast on 24 May. I’ve a tape of it somewhere, this 30-minute...

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Music books to end lockdown: Sam Lee, Hawkwind, Dylan, Richard Thompson, and the Electric Muses

It won’t be long now before concert halls and back rooms, arts centres and festival grounds fill with people again, and live music, undistanced, unmasked, and in your face, comes back to us. In expectation of this gradual reopening of the stage...

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Albums of the Year 2020: Phoebe Bridgers - Punisher

Music has been a solace during a year when we’ve both retreated into our private spaces and reached out more feverishly than ever on social media.There’s been very little live music: I’ve almost obsessively trawled YouTube for the best old footage:...

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Albums of the Year 2020: Bob Dylan - Rough and Rowdy Ways

Given Dylan’s last album of originals was in 2012, and his standards phase had concluded with a slightly meandering three-disc set in Triplicate, expectations of anything other than an archival release or new tour announcement from Dylan in 2020...

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CD: Bob Dylan - Rough and Rowdy Ways

When “Murder Most Foul” was dropped into an unsuspecting world under lockdown, the surprise was palpable, given that eight years had passed since Tempest, filled by Sinatra covers and seasonal tours. That it was a 16-minute epic that took Dylan’s...

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A simple twist of fate - how a chance encounter with 'Joan Baez, Vol 2' 50 years ago led to a festival in Downtown Manhattan

We’ve all spent time considering our desert island discs, which is of course why the programme Roy Plomley devised one winter’s night in 1942 is still thriving. The choices are perhaps less favourites than music that takes you back to a specific...

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Single: Bob Dylan - Murder Most Foul

A combination of chopped-up newsreel and fever dream, “Murder Most Foul” is Bob Dylan’s most striking piece of work in years. This is the author of “Desolation Row” populating a 17-minute song with a lifetime of remembered cultural fragments,...

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Girl From The North Country, Gielgud Theatre review – poignant collaboration between Conor McPherson and Bob Dylan

Despair hangs like mildew over the small iron-ore mining town of Duluth, Minnesota, where dreams go to die, and the living haunt the clapped-out buildings like lost souls. This poignant collaboration between playwright Conor McPherson and Bob Dylan...

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Bob Dylan and Neil Young, BST Hyde Park review - flat-out brilliant and strangely compelling

It was billed as a moment of musical history: two of the great icons of rock'n'roll sharing a double-headline. A dream ticket. Except, of course, everyone knows that only one of the two acts is still a conventional performer. And it's not Bob Dylan....

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