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Rock - Released June 19, 2020 | Columbia

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Immediately contradicting the album's title, opener "I Contain Multitudes" finds Dylan doing his best Leonard Cohen: the lion in winter, growling with deceptively gentle gravitas over cinematic guitar—paying tribute to William Blake, Anne Frank, Indiana Jones and "them British bad boys the Rolling Stones." If it were to be the 79-year-old's last stand, it's a pretty damn great one. But he immediately springs to spirited life with "False Prophet," a no-frills dirty blues march. There are so many highlights: "My Own Version of You" is a laugh-out-loud "Frankenstein" tale set to a shadowy guitar prowl; the swooning "I've Made Up My Mind to Give Myself to You" borrows from doo-wop balladry. "I hope the gods go easy with me," Dylan croons on that track, and it's hard to shake the feeling that he's taking stock. But there's still so much to say. "Key West (Philosopher's Pilot)" finds the elder statesman chasing immortality along Route 1 for nine-and-a-half fully entertaining minutes, while closer "Murder Most Foul" stretches out for nearly 17, reliving the Kennedy assassination and incanting a phone book's worth of cultural-imprint references without wasting a second. © Shelly Ridenour/Qobuz
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Folk/Americana - Released May 24, 1963 | Columbia

Hi-Res Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography - Hi-Res Audio
It's hard to overestimate the importance of The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan, the record that firmly established Dylan as an unparalleled songwriter, one of considerable skill, imagination, and vision. At the time, folk had been quite popular on college campuses and bohemian circles, making headway onto the pop charts in diluted form, and while there certainly were a number of gifted songwriters, nobody had transcended the scene as Dylan did with this record. There are a couple (very good) covers, with "Corrina Corrina" and "Honey Just Allow Me One More Chance," but they pale with the originals here. At the time, the social protests received the most attention, and deservedly so, since "Blowin' in the Wind," "Masters of War," and "A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall" weren't just specific in their targets; they were gracefully executed and even melodic. Although they've proven resilient throughout the years, if that's all Freewheelin' had to offer, it wouldn't have had its seismic impact, but this also revealed a songwriter who could turn out whimsy ("Don't Think Twice, It's All Right"), gorgeous love songs ("Girl From the North Country"), and cheerfully absurdist humor ("Bob Dylan's Blues," "Bob Dylan's Dream") with equal skill. This is rich, imaginative music, capturing the sound and spirit of America as much as that of Louis Armstrong, Hank Williams, or Elvis Presley. Dylan, in many ways, recorded music that equaled this, but he never topped it. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Rock - Released January 17, 1975 | Columbia

Hi-Res Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
Following on the heels of an album where he repudiated his past with his greatest backing band, Blood on the Tracks finds Bob Dylan, in a way, retreating to the past, recording a largely quiet, acoustic-based album. But this is hardly nostalgia -- this is the sound of an artist returning to his strengths, what feels most familiar, as he accepts a traumatic situation, namely the breakdown of his marriage. This is an album alternately bitter, sorrowful, regretful, and peaceful, easily the closest he ever came to wearing his emotions on his sleeve. That's not to say that it's an explicitly confessional record, since many songs are riddles or allegories, yet the warmth of the music makes it feel that way. The original version of the album was even quieter -- first takes of "Idiot Wind" and "Tangled Up in Blue," available on The Bootleg Series, Vols. 1-3, are hushed and quiet (excised verses are quoted in the liner notes, but not heard on the record) -- but Blood on the Tracks remains an intimate, revealing affair since these harsher takes let his anger surface the way his sadness does elsewhere. As such, it's an affecting, unbearably poignant record, not because it's a glimpse into his soul, but because the songs are remarkably clear-eyed and sentimental, lovely and melancholy at once. And, in a way, it's best that he was backed with studio musicians here, since the professional, understated backing lets the songs and emotion stand at the forefront. Dylan made albums more influential than this, but he never made one better. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Rock - Released June 17, 1966 | Columbia

Hi-Res Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
Reference album, rock monument, pop masterpiece.
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Rock - Released August 27, 1965 | Columbia

Hi-Res Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography - Exceptional Sound Recording - Hi-Res Audio
Taking the first, electric side of Bringing It All Back Home to its logical conclusion, Bob Dylan hired a full rock & roll band, featuring guitarist Michael Bloomfield, for Highway 61 Revisited. Opening with the epic "Like a Rolling Stone," Highway 61 Revisited careens through nine songs that range from reflective folk-rock ("Desolation Row") and blues ("It Takes a Lot to Laugh, It Takes a Train to Cry") to flat-out garage rock ("Tombstone Blues," "From a Buick 6," "Highway 61 Revisited"). Dylan had not only changed his sound, but his persona, trading the folk troubadour for a streetwise, cynical hipster. Throughout the album, he embraces druggy, surreal imagery, which can either have a sense of menace or beauty, and the music reflects that, jumping between soothing melodies to hard, bluesy rock. And that is the most revolutionary thing about Highway 61 Revisited -- it proved that rock & roll needn't be collegiate and tame in order to be literate, poetic, and complex. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Rock - Released March 19, 1965 | Columbia

Hi-Res Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography - Hi-Res Audio
With Another Side of Bob Dylan, Dylan had begun pushing past folk, and with Bringing It All Back Home, he exploded the boundaries, producing an album of boundless imagination and skill. And it's not just that he went electric, either, rocking hard on "Subterranean Homesick Blues," "Maggie's Farm," and "Outlaw Blues"; it's that he's exploding with imagination throughout the record. After all, the music on its second side -- the nominal folk songs -- derive from the same vantage point as the rockers, leaving traditional folk concerns behind and delving deep into the personal. And this isn't just introspection, either, since the surreal paranoia on "It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)" and the whimsical poetry of "Mr. Tambourine Man" are individual, yet not personal. And that's just the tip of the iceberg, really, as he writes uncommonly beautiful love songs ("She Belongs to Me," "Love Minus Zero/No Limit") that sit alongside uncommonly funny fantasias ("On the Road Again," "Bob Dylan's 115th Dream"). This is the point where Dylan eclipses any conventional sense of folk and rewrites the rules of rock, making it safe for personal expression and poetry, not only making words mean as much as the music, but making the music an extension of the words. A truly remarkable album. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Rock - Released May 21, 2021 | BMG Rights Management (UK) Ltd

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Rock - Released April 11, 1969 | Columbia

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John Wesley Harding suggested country with its textures and structures, but Nashville Skyline was a full-fledged country album, complete with steel guitars and brief, direct songs. It's a warm, friendly album, particularly since Bob Dylan is singing in a previously unheard gentle croon -- the sound of his voice is so different it may be disarming upon first listen, but it suits the songs. While there are a handful of lightweight numbers on the record, at its core are several excellent songs -- "Lay Lady Lay," "To Be Alone With You," "I Threw It All Away," "Tonight I'll Be Staying Here With You," as well as a duet with Johnny Cash on "Girl From the North Country" -- that have become country-rock standards. And there's no discounting that Nashville Skyline, arriving in the spring of 1969, established country-rock as a vital force in pop music, as well as a commercially viable genre. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Pop/Rock - Released January 16, 1976 | Columbia

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If Blood on the Tracks was an unapologetically intimate affair, Desire is unwieldy and messy, the deliberate work of a collective. And while Bob Dylan directly addresses his crumbling relationship with his wife, Sara, on the final track, Desire is hardly as personal as its predecessor, finding Dylan returning to topical songwriting and folk tales for the core of the record. It's all over the map, as far as songwriting goes, and so is it musically, capturing Dylan at the beginning of the Rolling Thunder Revue era, which was more notable for its chaos than its music. And, so it's only fitting that Desire fits that description as well, as it careens between surging folk-rock, Mideastern dirges, skipping pop, and epic narratives. It's little surprise that Desire doesn't quite gel, yet it retains its own character -- really, there's no other place where Dylan tried as many different styles, as many weird detours, as he does here. And, there's something to be said for its rambling, sprawling character, which has a charm of its own. Even so, the record would have been assisted by a more consistent set of songs; there are some masterpieces here, though: "Hurricane" is the best-known, but the effervescent "Mozambique" is Dylan at his breeziest, "Sara" at his most nakedly emotional, and "Isis" is one of his very best songs of the '70s, a hypnotic, contemporized spin on a classic fable. This may not add up to a masterpiece, but it does result in one of his most fascinating records of the '70s and '80s -- more intriguing, lyrically and musically, than most of his latter-day affairs. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Soul - Released March 30, 2018 | Verve

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama
A great, revived soul voice. Politically-conscious songs from the Great American Songbook. This project harks back to the 1960s (and beyond), but it finds a strong echo in today's America, divided and rocked by President Trump... By dedicating the whole record to covers of songs by Bob Dylan, Bettye LaVette makes her voice heard, literally and figuratively. Produced by Steve Jordan, Things Have Changed which features, amongst others, Keith Richards and Trombone Shorty, alternates between warm, vintage soul, and funkier bursts of real rock'n'roll. Above all, the 72-year old soul artist from Michigan continues to prove that she has a lot of singing in her yet. LaVette made her definitive comeback as long ago as 2005, with the album I’ve Got My Own Hell To Raise, itself also made up of covers, this time of songs from artists like Sinéad O'Connor, Lucinda Williams, Joan Armatrading, Rosanne Cash, Dolly Parton, Aimee Mann and Fiona Apple. Two years later she confirmed her vocal powers with The Scene Of The Crime which revisited Eddie Hinton, George Jones, Willie Nelson, Ray Charles, John Hiatt and Elton John. Coming, like all good things in spurts of threes, Interpretations: The British Rock Songbook, from 2010, saw her taking on compositions by the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, Traffic, the Animals, Led Zep, George Harrison, Pink Floyd, Ringo Starr, Paul McCartney, the Moody Blues, Derek & The Dominos and the Who… This latest 2018 offering, though, stands head and shoulders above the others, thanks to the hair-raising sincerity that the singer brings to Dylan's repertoire. Great art. © Max Dembo/Qobuz
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Pop/Rock - Released January 10, 1964 | Columbia

Hi-Res Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
If The Times They Are a-Changin' isn't a marked step forward from The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan, even if it is his first collection of all originals, it's nevertheless a fine collection all the same. It isn't as rich as Freewheelin', and Dylan has tempered his sense of humor considerably, choosing to concentrate on social protests in the style of "Blowin' in the Wind." With the title track, he wrote an anthem that nearly equaled that song, and "With God on Our Side" and "Only a Pawn in Their Game" are nearly as good, while "Ballad of Hollis Brown" and "The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll" are remarkably skilled re-castings of contemporary tales of injustice. His absurdity is missed, but he makes up for it with the wonderful "One Too Many Mornings" and "Boots of Spanish Leather," two lovely classics. If there are a couple of songs that don't achieve the level of the aforementioned songs, that speaks more to the quality of those songs than the weakness of the remainder of the record. And that's also true of the album itself -- yes, it pales next to its predecessor, but it's terrific by any other standard. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Pop/Rock - Released September 22, 1989 | Columbia

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Oh Mercy was hailed as a comeback, not just because it had songs noticeably more meaningful than anything Bob Dylan had recently released, but because Daniel Lanois' production gave it cohesion. There was cohesion on Empire Burlesque, of course, but that cohesion was a little too slick, a little too commercial, whereas this record was filled with atmospheric, hazy production -- a sound as arty as most assumed the songs to be. And Dylan followed suit, giving Lanois significant songs -- palpably social works, love songs, and poems -- that seemed to connect with his past. And, at the time, this production made it seem like the equivalent of his '60s records, meaning that its artiness was cutting edge, not portentous. Over the years, Oh Mercy hasn't aged particularly well, seeming as self-conscious as such other gauzy Lanois productions as So and The Joshua Tree, even though it makes more sense than the ersatz pizzazz of Burlesque. Still, the songs make Oh Mercy noteworthy; they find Dylan quietly raging against the materialism of President Reagan and accepting maturity, albeit with a slight reluctance. So, Oh Mercy is finally more interesting for what it tries to achieve than for what it actually does achieve. At its best, this is a collection of small, shining moments, with the best songs shining brighter than their production or the album's overall effect. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Pop/Rock - Released November 1, 1983 | Columbia

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Infidels was the first secular record Bob Dylan recorded since Street Legal, and it's far more like a classicist Dylan album than that one, filled with songs that are evocative in their imagery and direct in their approach. This is lean, much like Slow Train Coming, but its writing is closer to Dylan's peak of the mid-'70s, and some of the songs here -- particularly on the first side -- are minor classics, capturing him reviving his sense of social consciousness and his gift for poetic, elegant love songs. For a while, Infidels seems like a latter-day masterpiece, but toward the end of the record it runs out of steam, preventing itself from being a triumph. Still, in comparison to everything that arrived in the near-decade before it, Infidels is a triumph, finding Dylan coming tantalizingly close to regaining all his powers. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Pop/Rock - Released August 20, 1979 | Columbia

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Perhaps it was inevitable that Bob Dylan would change direction at the end of the '70s, since he had dabbled in everything from full-on repudiation of his legacy to a quiet embrace of it, to dipping his toe into pure showmanship. Nobody really could have expected that he would turn to Christianity on Slow Train Coming, embracing a born-again philosophy with enthusiasm. He has no problem in believing in a vengeful god -- you gotta serve somebody, after all -- and this is pure brimstone and fire throughout the record, even on such lovely testimonials as "I Believe in You." The unexpected side effect of his conversion is that it gave Dylan a focus he hadn't had since Blood on the Tracks, and his concentration carries over to the music, which is lean and direct in a way that he hadn't been since, well, Blood on the Tracks. Focus isn't necessarily the same thing as consistency, and this does suffer from being a bit too dogmatic, not just in its religion, but in its musical approach. Still, it's hard to deny Dylan's revitalized sound here, and the result is a modest success that at least works on its own terms. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Pop/Rock - Released December 29, 1967 | Columbia

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Bob Dylan returned from exile with John Wesley Harding, a quiet, country-tinged album that split dramatically from his previous three. A calm, reflective album, John Wesley Harding strips away all of the wilder tendencies of Dylan's rock albums -- even the then-unreleased Basement Tapes he made the previous year -- but it isn't a return to his folk roots. If anything, the album is his first serious foray into country, but only a handful of songs, such as "I'll Be Your Baby Tonight," are straight country songs. Instead, John Wesley Harding is informed by the rustic sound of country, as well as many rural myths, with seemingly simple songs like "All Along the Watchtower," "I Dreamed I Saw St. Augustine," and "The Wicked Messenger" revealing several layers of meaning with repeated plays. Although the lyrics are somewhat enigmatic, the music is simple, direct, and melodic, providing a touchstone for the country-rock revolution that swept through rock in the late '60s. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Rock - Released June 22, 1966 | Columbia - Legacy

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Rock - Released March 27, 2020 | Columbia

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Pop/Rock - Released September 10, 2012 | Columbia

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Country - Released September 26, 1995 | Nonesuch

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Pop/Rock - Released September 11, 2001 | Columbia

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Bob Dylan in the magazine