Bob Dylan
Blonde on Blonde


5.0
classic

Review

by Humor99 USER (14 Reviews)
January 14th, 2005 | 105 replies


Release Date: 1966 | Tracklist


Bob Dylan is well-known for his musical talent and his amazing, if not a bit strange, writing talents. Blonde on Blonde was originally released as a double-album, and is known as being one of his best works. From the epic 'Sad-Eyed Lady of the Lowlands' to the simple 'I Want You', Dylan merges many styles and ideas to make one helluva an album.

1. Rainy Day Women #12 & 35 - 4:36
"Everybody must get stoned" is the anthem of this song. It's a slow song with a lot of harmonica and marching drum beat, but not much else. The song could've been shorter I guess, because essentially it's Dylan telling everyone to get stoned. Not that there's anything wrong with that. - 3.5/5

2. Pledging My Time - 3:50
Off the bat, a very bluesy song with a standard blues guitar groove and harmonica added. A very good song with a lot of blues and folk mixed, but again, nothing really special. The thing that makes Blonde on Blonde so good is its ability to have good songs, if not great ones. There are no really bad ones. - 3/5

3. Visions of Johanna - 7:33
A more laid back song with a blues guitar throwing in licks here and there. The harmonica is also present in the beginning of the song, like many songs on this album. Dylan does his typical non-sensical lyrics, but somehow it all sounds so good. It's about remembrance and such things like that, and his voice just guides you through the song. - 4/5

4. Sooner or Later (One of Us Must Know) - 4:54
A song about trying to get close to somebody, and losing out. All you want is for the other person to know you did try, and did mean it. The keyboard's presence is essential along with the guitarwork and drums. It really gives a feel for the song as it crescendos right before the chorus. A strong song. - 4/5

5. I Want You - 3:07
The guitar licks and basic instrumentation in this is subtle, but very well-worked. The simplicity of the song is part of its brilliance, with Dylan not trying to work the listener into a crazy metaphoric web of messages. It's just as simple as the chorus: "I want you, I want you, I want you, so bad." - 4.5/5

6. Stuck Inside a Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again - 7:05
This song has an infectious beat and lyrical style. You'll probably be singing the chorus a few days later, and the guitar licks in the background are simple but elegant. It seems Dylan always wanted his voice to be the front of the song, but always knew he needed a catchy beat and lick in the background to keep it all together. Even at 7 minutes, you'll barely notice how long the song is. - 5/5

7. Leopard-skin Pill-box Hat - 3:58
Another standard sounding blues beat with the guitar being the main instrument here, going for that high staccato sound. This song is quite a weird topic, about some crazy hat that somebody is wearing. Although it makes very little sense, the beat is infectious enough that you might be humming it soon. - 4/5

8. Just Like a Woman - 4:52
Starting with some harmonica work, the song slows down into a slow folk rhythm about a woman who "breaks just like a little girl." It's a slow song that's mellow enough to listen through it and not really notice. - 3.5/5

9. Most Likely You'll Go Your Way (And I'll Go Mine) - 3:30
Another song about going separate ways, but not necessarily in love. Just people with different ideas and not being able to agree, just going two ways. Nothing particularly stands out about this song, but it's still worth a listen. - 3/5

10. Temporary Like Achilles - 5:02
Another slow song that seems like Dylan is just reading poetry in a lounge. Not really upbeat or catchy. The lyrics are so out there, I'm not sure how to analyze the song. It breaks for some harmonica near the end, which keeps up the slow lounge-type style. Not bad at all. - 3/5

11. Absolutely Sweet Marie - 4:57
An upbeat guitar and drum beat brings this song a lot of life. The keyboards in the back have a very standout riff that fits perfectly with this song about Marie. Apparently she's not showing up, but the song's more upbeat that. Very good song. - 4/5

12. 4th Time Around - 4:35
A lovely finger-picked piece with harmonica makes this a very pretty sounding song. Simple in its music, but very elegant. It begins to crescendo in the middle, not really going anywhere lyrically, but the music is very comforting to listen to. Better piece than I remembered. - 4/5

13. Obviously 5 Believers - 3:35
A interesting folk and blues mix. Bluesy guitar with a folkish sort of beat. Sounds a lot like a Beatles/Lennon composition lyrically, but artists often try to imitate each others styles. Very interesting blend of styles. - 3/5

14. Sad Eyed Lady of the Lowlands - 11:20
A long epic to finish off the album, a perfect blues and folk mix. Steady guitar with a bit of harmonica here and there, Dylan makes a perfect homage to a woman. A sad song that doesn't leave you feeling that bad, but you can just tell how this woman is sad and how Dylan wants to be close to her. The piano/crescendo in the chorus is perfect for the mood. The lyrics are abstract, but the message is there. It always is with Dylan. - 5/5

Overall - 5/5
It's hard to rate this album anything lower just because of it's sheer brillance. Not every song is a 5, but together, the album is very strong. It's one of my favorite Dylan albums, along with Highway 61 Revisited. Anyone not familar with Dylan will probably agree this album is very good. Dylan's lyrical abilities are strange at times, but the message always seems to be floating around somewhere in the imagery. That's what he was best at, painting mental pictures and getting people to think. For that he's a great musician, and Blonde on Blonde is one of his best works.



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user ratings (949)
Chart.
4.5
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other reviews of this album
Zoso4 (5)
this album rules...

manoulos (5)
...


Comments:Add a Comment 
el doctor
July 18th 2004


83 Comments


Incredible album. The guy might not have the greatest voice or be the most technical guitar player, but he writes a hell of a song. The great thing about this album, along with all his others, is that it feels more like you're listening to a bunch of charming stories rather than any regular old music.

YDload
July 18th 2004


1207 Comments


Nice job, Humor. You are more than just a good flamer; you've also got some brains!

Humor99
July 18th 2004


16 Comments


[QUOTE=YDload]Nice job, Humor. You are more than just a good flamer; you've also got some brains![/QUOTE]
I knew I couldn't be all bad.

Oh and doctor, I totally agree. Perfect description.

izzy
July 23rd 2004


15 Comments


I like Dylan just as much as the next former Robert Zimmerman fan, but there can't be that much brilliance in simplicity. You seemed to describe just about every song as simple, I doubt there were as simple as you described. I mean Rainy Day Women # 12 & 35 isn't just about how "Everyone Must Get Stoned." I interpreted it as a song about how men are constantly troubled by women (mostly women they're with), and how men must be with women and, "get stoned," in biblical terms (but not literally stoned). Sorta saying, "Can't live with them, can't live without 'em."

AfroMan
July 23rd 2004


101 Comments


This album has very few of Dylan's classic songs but as an album, it is one of his best. Well done Humour - I think you surprised us all with this one. You've defintley gained yourself some dignity:thumb:

Humor99
July 23rd 2004


16 Comments


[QUOTE=izzy]I like Dylan just as much as the next former Robert Zimmerman fan, but there can't be that much brilliance in simplicity. You seemed to describe just about every song as simple, I doubt there were as simple as you described. I mean Rainy Day Women # 12 & 35 isn't just about how "Everyone Must Get Stoned." I interpreted it as a song about how men are constantly troubled by women (mostly women they're with), and how men must be with women and, "get stoned," in biblical terms (but not literally stoned). Sorta saying, "Can't live with them, can't live without 'em."[/QUOTE]
Didn't necessarily say it was about getting high did I? Exactly what the song says: Everybody must get stoned. Take it for what you will.

Dylan's brilliance does lie in his simplicity, he was a folk singer with a lot of musical background. He knew exactly what he wanted to say, how to say it, and how to make it sound good. Forget the 4 minute shredding solos and what not, this is great music. He's telling a story, and it doesn't need to be complicated.

izzy
July 25th 2004


15 Comments


[QUOTE=Humor99 V]Didn't necessarily say it was about getting high did I? Exactly what the song says: Everybody must get stoned. Take it for what you will.[/QUOTE]

Strike my last comments. I didn't know what I was talking about.

Creedence Clearwater
August 16th 2004


11 Comments


3. Visions of Johanna - 7:33
A more laid back song with a blues guitar throwing in licks here and there. The harmonica is also present in the beginning of the song, like many songs on this album. Dylan does his typical non-sensical lyrics, but somehow it all sounds so good. It's about remembrance and such things like that, and his voice just guides you through the song. - 4/5


Sorry, but I have to disagree 'cause it should be 5/5, my favourite Dylan song ever, ever, ever. Its not full of "non-sensical lyrics" but full of ambiguity and imagery, a true masterpiece.

Sorry if I got carried away but I really love the song and....

Only my opinion though......

Tapeworm
August 16th 2004


118 Comments


One of my favourite albums ever. I don't agree with all the simplicity stuff, as Bob is an incredible man and he used his intelligence and wit to a tee. The music is infectious and brilliant.

Humor99
August 16th 2004


16 Comments


[QUOTE=Creedence Clearwater]Sorry, but I have to disagree 'cause it should be 5/5, my favourite Dylan song ever, ever, ever. Its not full of "non-sensical lyrics" but full of ambiguity and imagery, a true masterpiece.

Sorry if I got carried away but I really love the song and....

Only my opinion though......[/QUOTE]
That's fine, maybe I just didn't listen to it enough.

sadisticmonkey
August 16th 2004


107 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Yeah, Rob...Its a good song... 5/5 it!

Humor99
January 26th 2005


16 Comments


I'll admit, Visions of Johanna is a lot better than I originally rated it.

Sepstrup
December 13th 2005


1563 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

That title goes to Blood On The Tracks in my book, but this is awesome as well. I would've given more songs 5/5... Stuck inside of mobile... is the best one, though.

I found some of your ratings to be a bit off. Just Like A Woman is a fantastic song, for instance. Visions of Johanna is definitely a 5/5...

Well, to each his own :PThis Message Edited On 01.16.06

El_Goodo
January 20th 2006


1008 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I stopped reading after I saw the first three song reviews. You say Rainyday Woman is a song about doing drugs appareantley the only line you heard was Everybody must get stoned, which is said four times in a song with a lot more lines.
"They'll stone you when your at the table, they'll stone you when your un and able" That has more to do with actually being stoned (as in the old days, when they would throw rocks).
And on Visions of Johanna you say it's Bob Dylan's typical non-sensical lyrics. Those lyrics are not non-sensical at all, and his lyrics are considered the best of all time. "Aint it just like the night to play, tricks on you when your trying to be so quiet" that's the first line, and makes perfect sense.
And also you seem to describe all the songs lyrics as abstract or "out there". It's called poetry.

sennabutton
January 25th 2006


10 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

I think you guys misunderstand humor, he says the same as you guys, just in a different way
Anyway great album!

cowboy angel blues
February 13th 2006


9 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

It's amazing how good and listenable this album is, considering the variety. In my opinion you underrated "Most Likely You Go Your Way (And I'll Go Mine)" and "Temporary Like Achilles." And I think "Sad-Eyed Lady of the Lowlands" is a bit overrated (by people in general); the lyrics are wonderful, but after the initial awe, I didn't find the song too easy to sit through. And, the verses are my favorite part of "I Want You." The first verse especially makes me extremely happy like few things can.

sennabutton
February 26th 2006


10 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

btw, Visions of Johanna is a classic, he was nominated for the nobel prize 15 times for that song! never won it though

ImTheFloor
May 8th 2006


59 Comments


I can't get into this album. I guess I need to listen to it a few more times. I love the lyrics but the album itself is "meh".

DownPaymentBlues78
May 8th 2006


278 Comments


The album is anything but meh. With excellent lyrics and some of the best instrumental work on a Dylan album (to listen to), this album is just an amazingly good time. 5/5 for sure, a classic! Dylan's best.

Internet.
June 15th 2006


9 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I Want You is the best song on blonde on blonde. I dislike Everybody Must Get Stoned immensely...



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