I've been feeling a reluctant blogger for the last month - however, Dylan's latest release Tell Tale Signs has forced me back to the keyboard. Almost everybody has received this album enthusiastically - seems like his Bobness can do little wrong at the moment. The only grumble is the extortionate price for the 3 disc set. I only got the double album edition, I simply can't afford £80 for an extra 12 songs, most of which I already own in a different version!
However, the previously unreleased 'Red River Shore' from the Time Out of Mind sessions (1997) is worth the £12 price alone. It's magnificent. How it didn't make it on to the original album I will never know. For a long time I've been sure that Dylan is mad - and this is just another reason to trust that theory. But the song - what a song! It brought tears to my eyes on the first listen.
I have a theory about this song - it's in some way a 'parable' about his faith - the girl is a symbol of his relationship with God. The writer of Song of Songs does this, too. And, for me this is why Jesus turns up in the last verse. This song was written at the same time as the equally brilliant 'Not Dark Yet', which suggests similiar sentiments. The struggling faith that Dylan expresses is a real one - a costly one not a cheap one. Just listen to the song and you'll see what I mean. This is certainly one to add to any DYLANitany. God bless ya Bob!