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PostPosted: Sat August 4th, 2012, 22:46 GMT 
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wineman wrote:
henrypussycat wrote:
political objection? The lyric's interesting and nasty so what's your problem?


No...not at all...no political objection. I just find the song to be a jumbled mess of poorly written, half thought out lyrics that are all over the map...at times, lacking a basis in fact. I find the song to be too...in your face, in it's lyric, music, and vocal delivery. I find it to be a truly immature song, all the way around.

I also don't like Union Sundown, although I did initially..very much so. I like the overall sound and movement of the song...but think if Bob's going to write a song stating the obvious (that US jobs are going overseas, and the US is supporting it by purchasing, etc.), he could have found a much more interesting lyric to express it.

Hey, but that's just me.

I always thought the song was a bit silly. I usually skip it.


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PostPosted: Sat August 4th, 2012, 23:04 GMT 
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Well, from what I can tell...from your limited time here...you have good taste 8)


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PostPosted: Sun August 5th, 2012, 19:50 GMT 

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For me the problem with Infidels is that at least half the record consists of sub standard songs; Sweetheart Like You, Neighbourhood Bully, Don't Fall Apart On Me Tonight, Man of Peace, Union Sundown are all poor. License To Kill is also only average. I and I is really overrated too, one of those songs it is easier to admire than actually like. Though it was fantastic live in 1993. Replace the poorer songs with Foot of Pride, Blind Willie McTell and Someone's 'Gotta Hold of My Heart and you have a lot stronger record. A decent cover wouldn't hurt either.


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PostPosted: Sun August 5th, 2012, 19:58 GMT 
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bobfan wrote:
For me the problem with Infidels is that at least half the record consists of sub standard songs; Sweetheart Like You, Neighbourhood Bully, Don't Fall Apart On Me Tonight, Man of Peace, Union Sundown are all poor.

You lie.


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PostPosted: Mon August 6th, 2012, 05:46 GMT 

Joined: Tue December 30th, 2008, 09:05 GMT
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Location: Liverpool
The Saw wrote:
bobfan wrote:
For me the problem with Infidels is that at least half the record consists of sub standard songs; Sweetheart Like You, Neighbourhood Bully, Don't Fall Apart On Me Tonight, Man of Peace, Union Sundown are all poor.

You lie.


No. Merely passing an opinion. Of the above songs, the only one I would consider giving listening time too is Man of Peace. You can keep the pseudo-romance of Sweetheart Like You and Don't Fall Apart On Me Tonight, two songs in need of an injection of sincerity, and the skewed world view of Union Sundown and Neighbourhood Bully. Although at least the first two have a decent tune; well Sweetheart does, for the first verse or two anyway, the bridge is awful. As these songs constitute half of the officially released Infidels that makes it a pretty s!"£ record. In my eyes anyway.
Take out Don't Fall Apart...for Someone's Gotta Hold of My Heart, Neighbourhood Bully for Blind Willie McTell, Union Sundown for Foot of Pride, dump Sweetheart.. all together and you have a much stronger collection of songs. I'd keep Lord, Protect My Child and Man of Peace for b-sides...


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PostPosted: Tue August 7th, 2012, 15:39 GMT 
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Location: you try to get away...they drag you back
I'm staring at the cover of Infidels, and I see a bearded man who looks to be at some unidentifiable age in his late 30s (he's actually 42 here). He hides behind dark sunglasses, a scruffy beard, and a Mona Lisa smile. If you look closely at the sunglasses, the reflection resembles the white lane markers of a single lane highway. This is a man who has been on some journeys. And he's always attempted to share his insights and rules of the road he's picked up along the way. Infidels is another collection of those lessons.

Lyrically, it's Bob's best certainly since Desire - I might enjoy them even more, as I've always favored Socioeconomic Bob over lovestory Bob - indeed, it's the love songs that are the weakest in this collection. While his songwriting well wasn't able to avoid cliche in the 80s, I don't think the edge to his societal bite has ever tapered (other than on the last two Christian albums perhaps..)

So, Jokerman - what a beast of a blessing of a song:

Standing on the waters casting your bread
While the eyes of the idol with the iron head are glowing
Distant ships sailing into the mist
You were born with a snake in both of your fists while a hurricane was blowing
Freedom just around the corner for you
But with the truth so far off, what good will it do?

Jokerman dance to the nightingale tune
Bird fly high by the light of the moon
Oh, oh, oh, Jokerman

So swiftly the sun sets in the sky
You rise up and say goodbye to no one
Fools rush in where angels fear to tread
Both of their futures, so full of dread, you don’t show one
Shedding off one more layer of skin
Keeping one step ahead of the persecutor within

Jokerman dance to the nightingale tune
Bird fly high by the light of the moon
Oh, oh, oh, Jokerman

You’re a man of the mountains, you can walk on the clouds
Manipulator of crowds, you’re a dream twister
You’re going to Sodom and Gomorrah
But what do you care? Ain’t nobody there would want to marry your sister
Friend to the martyr, a friend to the woman of shame
You look into the fiery furnace, see the rich man without any name


Jokerman dance to the nightingale tune
Bird fly high by the light of the moon
Oh, oh, oh, Jokerman

Well, the Book of Leviticus and Deuteronomy
The law of the jungle and the sea are your only teachers
In the smoke of the twilight on a milk-white steed
Michelangelo indeed could’ve carved out your features
Resting in the fields, far from the turbulent space
Half asleep near the stars with a small dog licking your face

Jokerman dance to the nightingale tune
Bird fly high by the light of the moon
Oh, oh, oh, Jokerman

Well, the rifleman’s stalking the sick and the lame
Preacherman seeks the same, who’ll get there first is uncertain
Nightsticks and water cannons, tear gas, padlocks
Molotov cocktails and rocks behind every curtain
False-hearted judges dying in the webs that they spin
Only a matter of time ’til night comes steppin’ in


Jokerman dance to the nightingale tune
Bird fly high by the light of the moon
Oh, oh, oh, Jokerman

It’s a shadowy world, skies are slippery grey
A woman just gave birth to a prince today and dressed him in scarlet
He’ll put the priest in his pocket, put the blade to the heat
Take the motherless children off the street
And place them at the feet of a harlot
Oh, Jokerman, you know what he wants
Oh, Jokerman, you don’t show any response

Jokerman dance to the nightingale tune
Bird fly high by the light of the moon
Oh, oh, oh, Jokerman

Copyright © 1983 by Special Rider Music


JOKERMAN

(original unreleased version)

Words and Music by Bob Dylan

Standing on the water casting your bread,
While the eyes of the idol with the iron head are glowing.
Distant ships sailing into the mist,
You were born with a snake in both of your fists while a hurricane was blowing.
Freedom just around the corner for you,
But with truth so far off, what good will it do?

Jokerman dance to the nightingale tune,
Bird fly high by the light of the moon,
Oh, oh, oh, Jokerman.

So swiftly the sun sets in the sky,
You rise up and say goodbye to no one.
No store bought shirt for you on your back,
One of the women must sit in the shack and sew one.
Shedding off one more layer of skin,
Keeping one step ahead of the persecutor within.

Jokerman dance to the nightingale tune,
Bird fly high by the light of the moon,
Oh, oh, oh, Jokerman.

You're a man of the mountains, you can walk on the clouds,
Manipulator of crowds, you're a dream twister.
You're going to Sodom and Gomorrah, but what do you care?
Ain't nobody there would want to marry your sister.
Scratching the world with a fine-toothed comb,
You're a king among nations, you're a stranger at home.


Jokerman dance to the nightingale tune,
Bird fly high by the light of the moon,
Oh, oh, oh, Jokerman.

Now, the Book of Leviticus and Deuteronomy,
The law of the jungle and the sea are your only teachers.
No crystal ball do you need on your shelf,
Michelangelo himself, could've carved out your features.
So drunk, standing in the middle of the street,
Directing traffic with a small dog licking your feet.


Jokerman dance to the nightingale tune,
Bird fly high by the light of the moon,
Oh, oh, oh, Jokerman.

Well, the preacher man talking about the deaf and the dumb,
And a world to come, thats already been pre-determined.
Nightsticks and water cannons, tear gas, and padlocks,
Molotov cocktails and rocks can't drown out his sermon.
You let the wicked walk right into a trap,
You give away all the good things that fall in your lap.

Jokerman dance to the nightingale tune,
Bird fly high by the light of the moon,
Oh, oh, oh, Jokerman.

It's a shadowy world, skies are slippery gray,
A woman just give birth to a prince today and she's dressed in scarlet.
He'll turn priests into pimps and make old men bark,
Take a woman who could have been Joan-of-Arc and turn her into a harlot.
Oh, Jokerman, you know what he wants,
Oh, Jokerman, you don't show any response.

Jokerman dance to the nightingale tune,
Bird fly high by the light of the moon,
Oh, oh, oh, Jokerman.

I would have loved the eighties if Bob just swam in lyrics like these and built up and played with that cool drum and bass rhythm behind them. It really fits the sound of a Lou Reed album or a modern Dylan album - with a little less boogie than modern times, but similar, nonetheless. Great singing here - maybe his best since Desire. (Tough to beat Saved though).
I love Mark Knopfler's presence and contributions. That poppy bass sound i enjoy in alot of albums from the time including Grateful Dead albums. This sound component left Rock for most of the nineties and the range was brought back with 'innovative' bands like Radiohead & later Indy bands (drums and bass are huge in the indy scene right now, oddly, so are Casios. I have not seen the electric drum kit make its way back to the scene, but it's only a matter of time. After all, It's a shadowy world, and skies are slippery gray. Thank God it's only a matter of time before night comes stepping in. Yes I love these lyrics. Quintessential dylan - and his 'exposition' for the album. A poppy layered narrative that lightly references the doom and gloom brought out in the more powerful Blind Willie McTell.

I am amazed at how Dylan immersed himself in this eighties sound - and shocked that he was motivated to do it. It's moments like these that I think of his popmusic knowledge base demonstrated in TTRH, and his consistent attention to what the contemporary music market is doing. He changed alongside the music, for the most part. So if his eighties music sucked, it's because that area of eighties music sucked at the time. But I'm not part of the camp that thinks it sucks. It's something from the eighties that has maintained relevance, and brings back the time with lucidity and what comes off as an authentic sound. I could imagine many of these songs playing to the background of the classic 80s TV dramas or during John Hughes movies. As a pop artist, I think it's safe to say Dylan gets the job done as good as most during the time. He just got overlooked because people were into worse crap by and large. (To be sure, there was also a lot of very good stuff - but the style of music was very far away from what Dylan was or could be doing). All of this could properly introduce each of his controversial eighties releases, but one of the most impressive things about Jokerman is that it at once maintains the finger pointing posture of the social critic, but also hints at autobiography about what life has been like growing up in the public eye. Not in an open way like Street~Legal, but layered in hints and metaphor, and a narrative that muddies the lines between narrator, the subject of the story, and the point of view...again, classic Dylan - hiding behind his shades.

Sweetheart like you:
What's a track like this doing on album like this? Well, the lyrics are great - the cadence and meter and precision of the words chosen. That's what I like about this song. The lyric melody pumps life into the ishemic staccato drum part, and dances with the tuby thick guitar line quite well. In the song, you wonder what the singer is bleeding for more : the sweetheart, or the sad world that surrounds her... the sweetheart isn't necessarily a girl either - kind of a baby blue figure. The innocent whose been battered by a broken world. Classic Bob.

Neighborhood Bully
The screaming guitar gutteral riff is enough to pump my blood, but I guess I'm an easy sell. And the lyrics - nothing wrong or too exciting. BUT quite a character this Neighborhood Bully is - I wouldn't have guessed Bob read The Punisher comic growing up! I wouldn't mind this guy in my neighborhood!

License to Kill
A beautiful, lyrically driven song. Wonderful guitar part. I love the 'woman on my block' symmetry with the 'man, the ignorant destroyer' image. The drums - well, the drums. A reminder that context is important. For a lot of eighties rock - the drummer's job was to keep time and stay out of the way of the the screaming guitarists or horns....Listen to AC/DC or Robert Palmer - well, the argument can be made that it's sad that Bob has lowered himself to those standards...I chalk it off to discomfort with a new music business. His interviews around this time reveal a lot of disdain and confusion...Also, I think I like the outtakes better.

Man of Peace
This song indicates that Dylan's blues for the eighties are in fine form - lyrics of social unrest - hidden behind a catchy melody that draws you in to hear the disturbing lyrics, which sail valiantly over a fine rock-based riff - where blues was in the eighties. dissolved by rock. Not a huge fan of the guitar soloing here - perhaps this is bob's first signs of holding band members back. Why couldn't these have been a harmonica solos? Those would have soared. Perhaps then this album would remind me of Oh Mercy even more - I think it's the effort to create a studio sound and the social/spiritual lyrics that unite these two albums for me now...

Union Sundown
Speaking of Robert Palmer...
The vocals could be better - but I do like the talkjab style of this period of Dylan songs. Brownsville Girls style. Too high pitched and tight for me here though. Lyrics are fine and snappy.

Democracy don’t rule the world
You’d better get that in your head
This world is ruled by violence
But I guess that’s better left unsaid
From Broadway to the Milky Way
That’s a lot of territory indeed
And a man’s gonna do what he has to do
When he’s got a hungry mouth to feed


Dylan certainly still knows how to pack a few punches and pull the stage out from under our feet!

I and I
Damn it's good. A little poppy on the album. A darker, Blind Willie McTellesque piano texture would have been useful, not this keyboard tapping... deeper tube needed on the guitar or a rougher blues edge. Would have really opened this one up. I suppose it might be the case on some of the outtakes? I'd have to revisit. Drum machine echo is kind of annoying. Now, I'm thinking I really prefer the out take versions...
Lyrics are excellent. What Was it You Wanted meets Ain't Talkin'. Man, there are a sh*tload of lyrics on this album. Perhaps his most prolific since BoB or BIABH...

Don't fall Apart on Me Tonight
And we're back. In the Eighties. Squarely. I cringe when I hear Bob sing, 'Tomorrow is never what it was supposed to be.'
This verse is so bad, it's comical:

Come over here from over there, girl
Sit down here. You can have my chair
I can’t see us goin’ anywhere, girl
The only place open is a thousand miles away and I can’t take you there
I wish I’d have been a doctor
Maybe I’d have saved some life that had been lost
Maybe I’d have done some good in the world
’Stead of burning every bridge I crossed


I don't know, maybe it was big in the roller rink circuit?
By and large, Dylan's best album closers are not the ones he's written to the girls...

Omigosh, I just heard this line:
My throat start to tickle and my nose itches
A poll to see who thinks he's talking about allergies and who thinks it's about cocaine? :lol: :lol:

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PostPosted: Tue August 7th, 2012, 16:49 GMT 
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like this album, but can never listen to it without thinking what might have been ... oh my


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PostPosted: Tue August 7th, 2012, 20:47 GMT 
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Jokerman is worth a triple album on its own.

Maybe the best Dylan lyrics ever, wonderful sound, beautiful pace, powerful gait.......one of his best songs ever, without a shadow of a doubt.

The rest is....I'd say....mediocre
:shock:
...as an average between definitely bad tracks (neighborhood, union) and pretty good (license, sweetheart, don't fall).


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PostPosted: Thu September 6th, 2012, 13:25 GMT 
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doomedtoloveyou wrote:
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1. Jokerman
2. Sweetheart Like You
3. Neighborhood Bully
4. License To Kill
5. Man Of Peace
6. Union Sundown
7. I And I
8. Don't Fall Apart On Me Tonight

Okay, my favorites on this one are "Sweetheart Like You," "I and I," and "Don't Fall Apart On Me Tonight" - Neighborhood Bully is right up there, too, as is License To Kill, Man of Peace, and Union Sundown. Okay. I love the whole thing.


I like Jokerman, License To Kill and Man of Peace very much, all three are Dylan-classics for me. Sweethart Like You and Don´t Fall Apart On Me Tonight do well as fillers. "I and I" hasn´t catched me, although I might be wrong on this one, I just have no patience to give that one a closer listening. Neighbourhood Bully and Union Sundown should better have been replaced by Blind Willie McTell and maybe one or two of the other "Outfidels". I absolutely hate NB. It seems like these two songs only made it, because Bob wanted to make a statement on Israel and workingclass-issues. With Blind Willie McTell on it (and with NB in trashcan on its way to a very distant galaxy) "Infidels" surely would have been on my Top-10-List of Dylan albums, but with that actual tracklist it isn´t. What a pity!


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