Review Summary: Go think it up again, Bob. Fallen Angels
is Bob Dylan’s 37th studio album. Comprised almost entirely of Frank Sinatra covers, it is the sequel to an idea barely worth following through on once, let alone twice. Or five times, if you count his career up.
Dylan sighing and crooning covers of songs buried deep in the void of pre-rock ’n roll America sounds like a man wearing someone else’s clothes. It’s as if he’s forgotten how inspired his interpretations of blues, folk and Americana have been – or perhaps, as he slowly dawdles through these thin, repetitive arrangements, he’s reminding us of it.
And really, if you tame his music and whitewash his words, there’s no real reason to listen to 75-year old Bob Dylan sing. The searing hipster sneer and the ear-splitting rock ’n roll howl are a thing of the past. The scratchy warble is alright for a couple of songs – old favourite ‘It Had To Be You’ and ‘The Melancholy Mood’ deserve their nod here - but over a full twelve-track album? Give us a bit of spice, Bob!
Maybe my biggest bugbear about Fallen Angels
is not that it sounds old so much as it sounds like it’s from a specific, definite, finished era. During Dylan’s late career hot streak, it hasn’t mattered how old his musical styles or narrative structures are, he’s found a universal message in them: lost love, revenge, regret and hope are timeless ideals and always will be. Is there anything so invigorating here as ‘Not Dark Yet’ from 1997’s Time Out of Mind
, poignant as ‘Mississippi’ from 2001’s “Love & Theft”
or emotionally charged as ‘Ain’t Talkin’’ from 2006’s Modern Times
? Nope. And you suspect even the greatest singer-songwriter of all time won’t be able to conjure up any gold dust on this latest scheme of his.
It was barely worth a punt Bob, and you gave it your darnedest. Go think it up again.
totally agree, without bobs words why would you want to hear him, The Christmas Album is hilarious though.
This is why people tend to prefer covers of his songs, especially if they're by Jimi Hendrix.
This is just redundant
I wouldnt say that ARS, I generally prefer his songs sung by him, they have a bite and attitude to them that the covers do not, yes hendrix doing watchtower is great, but it loses the spirit of the song when he plays it. My point was that Dylan should only sing Dylan songs
this is awful
Covers of Dylan songs are rarely ever better than the originals, although they are often better songs than the artists own songs.
But yes a Dylan cover album has always seemed kinda pointless to me.
the greatest singer-songwriter of all time
Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off
Wikipedia level fact
Yeah I struggle to see what's amusing about that. It is pretty much an objective fact.
"the greatest singer-songwriter of all time"
lol, he is one of the greatest, perhaps the greatest. A few shitty albums simply cannot erase the monumental records he wrote in the 60's
I wouldn't call
Before the Flood,
Slow Train Coming,
Shot of Love,
Knocked Out Loaded,
Down in the Groove,
Under the Red Sky,
Good as I Been to You,
World Gone Wrong,
Together Through Life,
Christmas in the Heart,
Shadows in the Night and
just "a few" albums (even if you exclude his miserable live catalogue).
You're right though that no matter how many more shitty records he puts out there, his successful works will always make him one of the best.
New Morning isn't a shitty album. It may have a couple of duds but it also has one or two songs that can only help back up the claim that he is the greatest.
new morning, good as I been to you, shot of love, together through life, down in the groove, are average albums, for anybody else
before the flood, hard rain, budokon, real live are live albums
christmas, pat garrett, shadows in the night, fallen angels are novelty albums, because he is bored.
that leaves 7 albums that you listed that can be considered not good "albums" which is about 20% of his total output, most from the 80"s go figure. 70% of the remaining 80% are mindblowing life changing albums, that nobody can come close to challenging
This album is pretty boring. It sounds like oldies music
It's not soley about the albums (even though the man has reeled off more classics than more or less anyone) it's about being an icon of the counter culture, making people see the light and setting others on the path.
Dylan IS the greatest.
preach it brother, THE best
Album Rating: 4.0
almost as good as Tempest honestly. Strongly disagree with rating here.
Album Rating: 4.0
Saved, Shot Of Love are outstanding albums. Infidels, New Morning, and Slow Train Coming contain some of his best material.
And to the reviewer, this isn't a collection of Frank Sinatra covers. It's called the Great American Songbook. Check out some standards before you review a record full of them.
Saved and Shot of Love are kinda horrendous tbh but I agree that New Morning and Infidels have some gems
frank sinatra covers is a funny idea