We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
"If you needed more evidence, the release this month of Bob Dylan's Christmas album, Christmas in the Heart, should close the case. Dylan fans are like Baby Huey dolls, those inflatable figures with the big red nose and the rounded bottom, weighted so that when you punch them--punch hard, punch with all your might--they bounce right back, grinning the same frozen, unchangeable grin."
I enjoyed it, particularly his version of "All Along The Watchtower." Nevertheless, it was pretty obvious that his voice is really just about shot, and that his band is compensating by being overly loud and rock-ish, drowning out the lyrics. Every once in a while, I could catch a string of words that sounded like Dylan, but most of the time it sounded like he'd been gargling with chlorox and kerosene.
It's a shame, because he used to be able to put some nuance into his songs. And of course, his real power is in his lyrics.
Sadly it's been that way since 2003, when he permanently dropped the acoustic sets -- perhaps in recognition of his roughening voice. He's never brought them back.
Without him picking up the acoustic guitar for a few tunes, it just doesn't feel like a complete "Dylan" show to me. Some of his greatest songs just don't work as well in electric arrangements (One Too Many Mornings, Tangled Up In Blue, She Belongs To Me, etc.) Still enjoy the shows, though.
True, it was difficult to understand the lyrics to most of the songs, but I still like the gnarly sound of his blown out voice box.....And compared to Shane MacGowan of The Pogues, who I saw perform the following week, Dylan's voice sounded almost sweet.