Bob Dylan Annnotated and Tablaturated
September 14, 2006 1:02 PM   Subscribe

Artur J's Annotated Lyrics of Bob Dylans Love and Theft has expanded and now features Annotated lyrics for Street Legal, Knocked Out Loaded, Oh, Mercy and Modern Times. And he is already on top of Dylan's quotes of Henry Timrod on the new album. On a related tip, someone waved a lawyer at Eyolf Østrem, so he removed all his tabs from his Dylan tablature site, My Back Pages. But, fortunately there are some mirrors and the blog of this one has a tab page for Modern Times already.
posted by y2karl (13 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
karl -- I'm wondering if you've read Ron Rosenbaum's review of "Modern Times" in the September 11 New York Observer? (I'd link to it, but it's in the paper's archives, which require a password.) Rosenbaum thinks its Dylan's worst since "Self-Portrait." He makes some good points, and I kinda wondered what you thought.
posted by Faze at 1:32 PM on September 14, 2006

Loads of Dylan goodies
posted by caddis at 1:42 PM on September 14, 2006

Faze, I don't know what y2karl thinks, but I'm enjoying the hell out of Modern Times. It's less of a jolt than Love and Theft because it's more of development of those themes and sounds, but sometimes I think the whole business of comparing one album by an aritst to another can only go so far -- I'm pretty confident that if this was the first Dylan record I'd ever heard, I'd still like it just as much, and maybe more.
posted by eustacescrubb at 1:47 PM on September 14, 2006

I'm finding I like Modern Times okay -- only one or two songs really stand out as amazing, but I'm sure others will add with time. Certainly not Dylan's worst album, although neither it nor Love and Theft approach the transcendence of Time out of Mind. I might be biased - that was the album that got me through high school, so it's got a...unique place in my heart.
posted by kalimac at 2:00 PM on September 14, 2006

I have been meaning to get this album; the one or two songs I have heard were great and most reviews have been good. Perhaps this will spur me stop off at Borders on the way home and pick up a copy.

As for the site, I thought it was something else that I remembered. Searching for annotated bob dylan didn't bring up anything I remember seeing. Perhaps I was just thinking of the annotated Grateful Dead and Alice's Restaurant sites. Anyway, it did find one of y2karl's all time great posts on MeFi: The Annotated Blonde On Blonde.
posted by caddis at 2:10 PM on September 14, 2006

> already on top of Dylan's quotes of Henry Timrod on the new album

Bob's been doing this for years just to grab a piece of the easter egg hunter audience. Past master of self-promotion keeps right up with the times.
posted by jfuller at 2:55 PM on September 14, 2006

For my part, I enjoyed the first few spins through Modern Times, but I agree that it pales in comparison to Time Out Of Mind. A couple of the songs are stellar, and the quality is generally good, but musically the album is all over the map. My favorite Dylan albums get repeated play because they manage to keep a particular mood flowing from start to finish. Albums like that are the ones that become "classics" in my mind. I have literally thousands of albums that have brilliant songs on them, but I would only name a tiny fraction of them great "albums."

All that aside, it's still a better album than most stuff I've heard this year, and possibly half of Dylan's catalogue.
posted by Banky_Edwards at 4:42 PM on September 14, 2006

I'm listening right now. Very nice, although I have to agree with Bob's recent remarks that the sound leaves something to be desired. The recording engineer should be shot. Thanks y2karl for that last little push to get me to the store.
posted by caddis at 5:21 PM on September 14, 2006

The country-fried swing/boogie thing that turned me off of Love and Theft is in fool bloom on Modern Times. I think I'll listen to Desire tonight instead.

And yeah, the sound of it feels very antiseptic... I think Bob should get someone other than that Jack Frost to produce his records. I've found Mr. Frost's efforts to be a bit bloodless, for lack of a better term, and I'm not sure he 'gets' Bob Dylan. :)
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 5:33 PM on September 14, 2006

full bloom. full. heh.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 5:35 PM on September 14, 2006

So... has anyone else noticed that track #6 of "Modern Times" (Workingman's Blues #2) has an extremely similar melody to "Total Eclipse of the Heart" ? Seriously, I get that song stuck in my head whenever the album gets to that track.
posted by gambit at 5:54 PM on September 14, 2006

I think it's a great album, although very much the album of a seasoned, and perhaps a bit tired, performer. The songs are tuneful as hell, and much of it's very very funny, often at Dylan's own expense. Working Man's Blues #2 is a great example of a song that pokes fun at the past, acknowledges the present and nods to the future all at once. All in all I think it's a n album by someone who knows where he is and what he's doing, and seems more comfortable with his place in American music and culture than he's seemed ever before. It isn't a rock album, though, which might well turn some people off. But since I like a lot of the, obvious, source styles for this work, I like the album well.

If you are interested in the record and like it, or aren't sure, I really recommend finding copies of the Theme Time Radio Hour that he's been doing on XM. The breadth of music played there gives a good sense, I think, of the scope of the background against which Dylan seems to be working these days.
posted by OmieWise at 6:14 AM on September 15, 2006

I will be hearing this latest Robert Zimmermann vehicle only by accident.
posted by telstar at 11:43 AM on September 15, 2006

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