Bob Dylan, "Shadows In The Night," To Be Released February 3, 2015
After some months of -- pardon me -- shadowboxing over the release details, it's official. BobDylan.com announced today that Dylan's much-anticipated album, Shadows In The Night, will be released on February 3.
Dylan himself, under his longtime nom de produire Jack Frost, produced the record. He's spoken about it on his website: "It was a real privilege to make this album. I've wanted to do something like this for a long time but was never brave enough to approach 30-piece complicated arrangements and refine them down for a 5-piece band. That's the key to all these performances. We knew these songs extremely well. It was all done live. Maybe one or two takes. No overdubbing. No vocal booths. No headphones. No separate tracking, and, for the most part, mixed as it was recorded. I don't see myself as covering these songs in any way. They've been covered enough. Buried, as a matter a fact. What me and my band are basically doing is uncovering them. Lifting them out of the grave and bringing them into the light of day."
The track listing (with some earlier versions, not exclusively Frank Sinatra's and a couple by Dylan, embedded here) is as follows:
1. I'm A Fool To Want You (1951)
2. The Night We Called It A Day (1941)
3. Stay With Me (1963)
4. Autumn Leaves (1945-47)
5. Why Try To Change Me Now? (1952)
6. Some Enchanted Evening (1949)
7. Full Moon And Empty Arms (1945)
8. Where Are You? (1937)
9. What'll I Do? (1923)
10. That Lucky Old Sun (1949)
Yes, as Dylan says, these songs have been covered so much that they're buried. One of the great strengths of his recent releases, and particularly the remastered recordings of the Bootleg Series, has been their stripped-down sound. Overproduction of the sometimes distant past gives way to a newly clean and fresh sound, extracted and resurrected. The way his own five-piece band has sounded on stage in Dylan's recently concluded 2014 tour gives a happy intimation of how the tracks on Shadows In The Night will be: infinitely audible, and with each individual instrument, including Dylan's voice, so. And nota bene, for those who like to complain of not being able to understand lyrics when Dylan sings them, these songs will make it impossible for you to do so.
cover image for Shadows In The Night via bobdylan.com