Bob Dylan Rough and Rowdy Ways (2020)

Produced by Jack Frost

Tempest was his last album of original songs released 8 years ago so I was excited when I heard of a new album. To me, it is amazing how at 79 years old and a career of more than 30 years, Dylan has managed to be as relevant and successful as he was in the ’60s. Since 2000’s Love and theft Dylan has delivered great albums and Tempest was a great album.

Dylan’s lyrics remain the main attraction for me. And they are still as sharp as ever. Demanding that we listen multiple times to really grasp the words. There are so many lines in this album that are just clever, like the line from “I contain multitudes” where Dylan says “I sleep with life and death on the same bed”, I’m sure every listener will apply a different meaning to what they hear. False prophet is an interesting song as early in his career he was called a prophet and now he is saying he is not a false prophet, I know there might not be a connection but still interesting. My own version of you is an interesting track about someone mixing and creating a version of someone. I made up my mind to give myself to you is a nice song both melody and lyrics. Murder must foul needs to be mentioned as an epic 17-minute song about Kennedy and that era, only Dylan could write a song like that and that he is still doing it is incredible.

I am adding this section to the review because upon second hearing I just heard what could be among Dylan’s best songs in “Mother of Muses”. It got me to tears, what a song. Dylan just continues to wrote meaningful music that speak to the times.

As I write this review I have to say that the album demands more than one listen. I’m sure I’ll be listening to this album this weekend a few more times. But at first, listen to Dylan once again gives his audience a great album. I think what Dylan does best is not trying to produce music for the times, he remains himself and his music just feels more unique and better for that reason.

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