Bob Dylan Does It His Way

‘Shadows In the Night’ Is Bland on Bland

It’s ironic that Bob Dylan has traveled from Blonde on Blonde to “bland on bland” — perpetuating the trend of rich, aging rock stars cheesing out and covering The Great American Song Book ad nauseam. Yet perhaps it was inevitable that Dylan —the greatest songwriter of the 20th century — would cover Sinatra, the 20th century’s most popular singer. And ultimately, Dylan has always been an amazing iconoclast who, like Frank Sinatra before him, has done it his way. The 10 ballads on Shadows In the Night are tastefully if minimally arranged, steeped in noir and emphasizing pedal steel guitar while complementing Dylan’s “tangled up in blue” crooning. Who knows what nostalgia, yearning, regret, and tenderness lurks in the heart of Bob Dylan? The shadows know. 

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