Sunday, September 28, 2008

Bob Dylan - Solid Rock

(Columbia, 1980)

The studio sheen, backing singers, and Godtalk are back for another round of bloated blandness, but at least this time there’s some slightly muscular rhythmic chug that gives “Solid Rock” a life-support-level pulse. In fact, the arrangement is, overall, quite like a flaccid attempt at The Concert for Bangladesh’s big-band Harrisonisms; a failed attempt, certainly, and yet fascinating in its grotesque overkill. “Covenant Woman” is a dull karaoke exercise as wretched as the worst of Slow Train Coming, and makes it clear that no matter how many expensive session pros he surrounded himself with at this point, Dylan really just didn’t seem to give a shit anymore. Offensively boring tripe that’s both lazy and soulless – an insult to anyone stupid enough to listen.

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