Fundamentalists will brook no difference, I'm afraid. Goombay even made up a clever new church for himself.
more of anti musical defamation league, proposing the ideas that an artist who creates the music in this case bob, is the only party suited to know how the music should be presented.
i may not like americana the new neil young, but i just wont buy, i wont to to neil young dot com and go on about how it should have had banjos and fiddles. thats not what neil had in mind. thats the problem with whats left of the music industry today, too many hands inside the pot.
You're onto something here. But you may be in danger of phrasing it too strongly.
be mistaken about their own work. Bob, for instance, was plainly wrong when he excluded songs like 'Angelina' and 'Groom Still Waiting at the Altar' and 'Blind Willie McTell' from his albums. You have to go through hoops of counter-intuitive rationalization to suggest that expelling those tuns in favour of dreck like 'Trouble' or 'Neighborhood Bully' was a good idea. Bob was also wrong in allowing producers to inflict sonic abominations upon the material on UTRS and Empire Burlesque
. Finally, he just didn't do a very good job in writing songs like 'Beyond the Horizon' and 'Levee Gonna Break,' which are mediocre compositions by Dylan standards. And listeners should be able to point out these sorts of failings, as, objectively, failings.
At the same time, you're spot on that many of the complaints about MT are of a piece with the sorts of complaints that Dylan fans have been making ever since Another Side
. They are complaining that, in effect, this
album doesn't sound like some fixed idea they have about what a Bob Dylan album should sound like
Thus, 'Thunder on the Mountain' is to be criticized because it's not a rave-up like 'Summer Days.' But it's clearly not trying
to be 'Summer Days,' any more than MT is trying to be Love & Theft
, or Love and Theft was trying to be TOOM (something for which, incidentally, LT is sometimes criticized - it 'lacks the depth' of TOOM or whatever). It's slightly strange to me that after all these years people still keep trying to force Bob Dylan into their own preferred sonic and conceptual box; he has, after all, spent 50 years continually stepping out of such boxes.
In short, his music should be judged for what it is, not for whether it fits the template set by some earlier Dylan record. This does NOT mean that we can't judge any given album to be a flop on its own terms
. But we have to accept that those terms are not the same from album to album.