Album review: Bob Dylan - Tempest
Another strong showing from the gargling septuagenarian storyteller.
The latest addition to the surprisingly vibrant canon comprising Dylan’s dotage, Tempest is a 10-song eye-opener.
But the epic title track – an almost funereally paced, wildly reinvented retelling of the Titanic disaster – is no typical example.
At nigh-on 14 minutes it packs in Cameron’s fictional Jack Dawson, murderous passengers and sinking-ship horror. A vivid picture; but the best of it could have been packed into half as much swaying country and slide guitar.
Dylan’s rasping vocals are revealing his age, too, particularly on foot-tapping opening gambit Duquesne Whistle where his voice scratches for the high note at the end of a line.
“I ain’t dead yet, my bell still rings,” he rattles more comfortably on Early Roman Kings, a fiery take on Muddy Waters’ Mannish Boy.
But despite low-power delivery he is lucid and his vignettes, lyricism and wit are still switchblade sharp.
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- 2 Gun found in car as Met makes 130 arrests during drugs op
- 3 Replacement Finsbury Park leisure centre a step closer
- 4 'Government should rethink their plans': Masks still required on TfL
- 5 Screen on the Green: Dive into 1940s America this weekend
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- 8 Former Met cop faces trial with seven others over alleged bribery plot
- 9 Five arrested for drugs offences after dawn raids
- 10 'Graffiti vandal' linked with £500k worth of damage caught in Highbury
Perfect, then, for the murder ballads, lechery, envy, retribution and obsession populating this LP. Overall, it has to be said: Weather the storm, it’s worth it.