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Thursday, April 7, 2016

Artist: Bob Dylan

Track: “Masters of War”

bob dylann

I’m going to cut straight to the chase – Bob Dylan’s ‘Masters of War’ is one of the best songs he’s ever penned throughout his illustrious and weathered career. Not because of musical innovation, but because it contains perhaps the most profound and venomous lyrics he’s ever conjured up. We all know Dylan could write great lyrics in his sleep during his prime, but the heavy subject matter that permeates ‘Masters of War’ is nearly unmatched by anything else he’s put to paper. Musically, it’s one of the most simplistic songs on The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan, but behind the repetitive strumming of the guitars, Dylan unleashes a poignant performance that honestly examines both war and greed. He doesn’t just examine these harsh themes, however, he calls out the offenders with a sarcastic delivery –you ain’t worth the blood that runs in your veins/even Jesus would never forgive what you do. It only gets better from there, as he belts out more powerful lines – is your money that good, will it buy you forgiveness, do you think that it could/I think you will find when you death takes its toll, all the money you made will never buy back your soul. Finally, he viciously damns the lovers of war and money — I hope that you die, and your death will come soon, I follow your casket by the pale afternoon/I’ll watch while you’re lowered down to your death bed/I’ll stand over your grave ‘til I’m sure that you’re dead.

Yes, I just spent half of the previous paragraph quoting lyrics, but there’s no overstating how chillingly effective Dylan’s lyrical approach is on ‘Masters of War.’ It’s a song that makes a compelling statement; one that remains as true today as it did back in Dylan’s heyday. Its politically-charged approach isn’t for everybody, but I’ll be damned if I don’t get chills down my spine every time I hear Dylan’s persuasive argument in this song. Apart from being a lyrical powerhouse, Dylan is able to match the gripping themes with one of the most authentic performances of his entire career. At the end of the day, it won’t put a smile of joy on your face, but it will certainly get your thoughts racing with a fierce kick-start to the brain

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Atari
04.08.16
Happy Friday, now here's for a belated throwback Thursday post I had hoped to post yesterday

JamieTwort
04.08.16
Nice write up, dude.

"What exactly that statement is can widely be relayed back to interpretation"
Not sure I agree with this though, it's one of the most transparent and unambiguous songs he's ever penned which is one of the reasons it's not up there with my favourites of his as I don't feel it plays to his greatest strengths as a lyricist when dealing with socially relevant subject matter.

It's certainly one of his most powerful songs though and a very important one in his discography.


zakalwe
04.08.16
This is great!

I get chills everytime to. It's the bitterness and the way Dylan delivers it squarely at the establishment that makes it such a legendary tune.

Atari
04.08.16
cheers fellas

and thanks JT. yeah, I can see how that statement is somewhat contradictory now with the lyrics being so bitter and transparent. I think what I was going for was that a song like this isn't going to affect everyone the same way, but i might make a minor edit so it makes more sense. always appreciate honest criticism!

zakalwe
04.08.16
The vid needs more returning soldiers with limbs missing. 1000 yard stares. Children crying as there told dad has been kia . Woman crying at graves, civilian death tolls and more cheery stuff of that ilk.

ShitsofRain
04.09.16
liked this album a lot also

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