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Modern Times

I thought some of the reviews of Modern Times by Bob Dylan were over the top in their praise. But I’ve taken the evening off tonight (with some Cougar Dark Rum – I was a sucker for those busty blonde ads!) and been listening to my recently acquired copy of it. It is the best thing I’ve heard from old Zimmerman since Blood on the Tracks. Like the latter, this album has a rambling, tentative character to it which a few critics found unappealing. I didn’t. I found the album powerful listening with great lyrics. One of Dylan’s best. The rum was good too!

What did you think of this one?

6 comments to Modern Times

  • Sam Ward

    Practise the art of invisibleness.

  • Jack

    What do you think about Bob’s take on globalisation H? Do you think it’s different to yours?

    “The buyin’ power of the proletariat’s gone down
    Money’s gettin’ shallow and weak
    Well, the place I love best is a sweet memory
    It’s a new path that we trod
    They say low wages are a reality
    If we want to compete abroad…”

  • hc

    Jack, Its true wages for the unskilled have been cut by globalisation in the US and to a less extent in Australia. The economies as a whole derive efficiency gains via better returns to capital and other resources.

    In a democratic society these gains are threatened by protectionism and xenophobia. The answer – to redistribute some of the gains back to labour by the tax and transfer mechanmism – in the US a public health and health insurance scheme would be a good start. In Australia middle income earners and owners of capital should stop clamouring for income tax cuts.

  • hc

    Trackback on Jack’s question at Catallaxy.

  • Jack

    Come on Harry, you can’t have it both ways. What do you mean great lyrics? It rhymes nice? Or what? Is the content appealing or you just into academic irony? What is it with you people?

    “It is the best thing I’ve heard from old Zimmerman since Blood on the Tracks… I found the album powerful listening with great lyrics. One of Dylan’s best.”

  • hc

    Jack, You are an aggressive little bugger this morning aren’t you. Back on Atkins?

    I seldom drag simple political messages from Dylan’s music. Indeed many of the lyrics are cryptic to me but evocative. I find them poetical rather than hectoring-political and the musical instrumentation (as usual with Dylan) superb.

    The ‘voice like sand and glue’ also a bonus – Dylan’s intonation a buzz. He does a great growl.

    In this case you asked me about certain lines and I said they are consistent with what economists say these days about globalisation.

    But I didn’t get in a froth and say, wow, ‘Bobbie is singing my tune’.

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