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Do you consider Street Legal a classic?
Yes 63%  63%  [ 104 ]
No 37%  37%  [ 60 ]
Total votes : 164
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PostPosted: Sat August 11th, 2018, 14:36 GMT 
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Street Legal is by far his most underrated album. My apologies if I said that in the first 4 pages. Too lazy to go back and check.


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PostPosted: Sat August 11th, 2018, 15:31 GMT 
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Mickvet wrote:

I have a remaster dated from, I think, 1999, which sounds fairly impressive. Have I missed something?

Not sure if there were multiple remasters. The Calbi one was issued in a card cover, nice package. They did a whole series. It got plenty of publicity.


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PostPosted: Sat August 11th, 2018, 15:35 GMT 
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If it's 1978 and you're comparing it to all that came before, it's a disappointment. If you compare it to the decade that came after, it's pretty good.


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PostPosted: Sat August 11th, 2018, 17:48 GMT 

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gerardv wrote:
Mickvet wrote:

I have a remaster dated from, I think, 1999, which sounds fairly impressive. Have I missed something?

Not sure if there were multiple remasters. The Calbi one was issued in a card cover, nice package. They did a whole series. It got plenty of publicity.


I looked it up and only confused myself further. As far as I can make out, there was a remix in 1999, a remaster plus remix in 2003 and another remaster of the original version on the Complete Albums Collection. On the site that explained all this, all these versions had their own factions adamantly arguing for their favourite, but there seemed to be near-anonymity that the original, untouched 1978 version is muddy and difficult to listen to. I'll stick with my 1999 version, as I don't think the various differences justify the cost of multiple copies.


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PostPosted: Sat August 11th, 2018, 21:23 GMT 
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Mickvet wrote:
I looked it up and only confused myself further. As far as I can make out, there was a remix in 1999, a remaster plus remix in 2003 and another remaster of the original version on the Complete Albums Collection. On the site that explained all this, all these versions had their own factions adamantly arguing for their favourite, but there seemed to be near-anonymity that the original, untouched 1978 version is muddy and difficult to listen to. I'll stick with my 1999 version, as I don't think the various differences justify the cost of multiple copies.

I suppose not really worth it. Thanks for clarifying on the 3 versions.
It was a remix & remaster both times, so very much a from the ground
up review. Was that on the Steve Hoffman forum btw?


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PostPosted: Sat August 11th, 2018, 22:33 GMT 

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Loved it when it first came out. Played the hell out of it.
No Time to Think was my fav tune off it.


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PostPosted: Sat August 11th, 2018, 23:26 GMT 

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Interestingly, I have one brother who always refers to this album. Usually he listens to very weird electronics and industrial music. We bonded over Nirvana :x Anyway, he always says to me: “there was this one hit “where are you tonight” that was on the radio in Australia when our family lived there in the seventies.” Apparently he has the Street Legal LP. This is his one song of Bob’s that he likes. My question is: does Bob Dylan even know that “Where are you Tonight?” was a top 10 radio hit in Australia in 1978??


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PostPosted: Sat August 11th, 2018, 23:36 GMT 

Joined: Fri January 5th, 2007, 23:38 GMT
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gerardv wrote:
Mickvet wrote:
I looked it up and only confused myself further. As far as I can make out, there was a remix in 1999, a remaster plus remix in 2003 and another remaster of the original version on the Complete Albums Collection. On the site that explained all this, all these versions had their own factions adamantly arguing for their favourite, but there seemed to be near-anonymity that the original, untouched 1978 version is muddy and difficult to listen to. I'll stick with my 1999 version, as I don't think the various differences justify the cost of multiple copies.

I suppose not really worth it. Thanks for clarifying on the 3 versions.
It was a remix & remaster both times, so very much a from the ground
up review. Was that on the Steve Hoffman forum btw?


I wouldn't know a remix from a remaster, to be honest, if my life depended on it. Yes, it was Steve Hoffman. Many of the posters on the site seemed to be audiophiles. I think that reliance on very expensive equipment can easily lead to a missing of the wood for an over-emphasis on the trees. One ends up listening to the product of a music system rather than a piece of music. We've often heard of stories of Dylan demonstrating his music on cheap boomboxes and cassette-players. Dylan's approach seems more faithful to his music, I think.

My first copy of Street-Legal, bought on release, was a cassette which I played on a budget mono cassette-player. I don't recall my enjoyment of it as being any less than that of listening to my admittedly better-sounding remixed CD on far superior sound systems. It might be my ears.


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PostPosted: Sat August 11th, 2018, 23:38 GMT 
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I probably said this somewhere up thread. The first and last tracks are among the best he’s ever done.


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PostPosted: Sat August 11th, 2018, 23:46 GMT 

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Of course Street Legal is a classic.
It was an instantaneous classic in the summer of '78 and it remains a classic now.
This album cast a spell on me for a long time. I still succumb to it easily.


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PostPosted: Mon August 13th, 2018, 08:41 GMT 

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Classic is a bit of a strong word, its not up there with BOB,HW61,BOTT,BIABH or JWH.

But it is the level below that for me in the company of desire, planet waves,infidels, the period from TOOM to Tempest.


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PostPosted: Mon August 13th, 2018, 10:05 GMT 

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the_hurricane wrote:
Classic is a bit of a strong word, its not up there with BOB,HW61,BOTT,BIABH or JWH.

But it is the level below that for me in the company of desire, planet waves,infidels, the period from TOOM to Tempest.


Accepting that Street Legal more than most other records divides opinion, I think it is among the contenders for Bob's fifth best album, alongside Freewheelin' and JWH among others. One reason I love it is that its about the last album where his voice sounds more or less the same as in the golden era. Another is that it is in 'what is life about' territory without the preaching which followed. Not unlike TOOM by someone 20 years younger in some ways.


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PostPosted: Mon August 13th, 2018, 14:49 GMT 
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Originally had this on vinyl in 1979. Was disappointed with it at the time.

Cd burned to my MP3 player, and enjoying it more ( cause it's really LOUD) on my daily commute into work.

An album I now feel more warm towards as the years have passed, but still only middle-ranking IMHO.


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PostPosted: Fri August 17th, 2018, 05:30 GMT 

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Most of the time, when someone's writing about Dylan's career (or his 70's output, specifically) they gloss over Street-Legal. I still think it's a great album that deserves attention, but I sort of understand why people don't like it as much as his other efforts.

The only real clunker is Is Your Love in Vain, and that's because of the lyrics. The actual song is enjoyable, but those lyrics are just cringe worthy.

Changing of the Guards is great, as is Senor. I think the best song has to be Where Are You Tonight (Journey Through Dark Heat). New Pony is fantastic as well. So that's four songs I wouldn't want to be without, and there's more on that album to be enjoyed.

I was looking at old Track Talk's and I think Bennyboy's old post sums up the album wonderfully:

"Its a bleak, dirty, lowdown album. Interesting that Bob talked about this album getting closest to the 'thin wild mercury' sound, when the other album most commonly associated with that moniker is 'Blonde On Blonde'. Both albums produced at times of great self-abuse, both albums heralding a sea-change in the man and his music."


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PostPosted: Fri August 17th, 2018, 08:18 GMT 
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I'd love the powers-that-be to issue a deluxe version with first tries and outtakes and anything else we don't know from the Street Legal sessions ...much better purchase than redoing again Blood on the Tracks which has been well covered already. C'mon Sony ... be Street Legal.


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PostPosted: Fri August 17th, 2018, 10:32 GMT 
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PostPosted: Fri August 17th, 2018, 11:22 GMT 
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^Glad to see hyphen-pedantry is still going, long may it continue. :)

My views on Street-Legal haven't changed. I remember another contributor once saying that Blood on the Tracks wasn't the break-up album, Street-Legal was the break-up album. Chronologically he was right, that's if you really believe in such a thing as the break-up album, of course. Certainly there's an underlying desperation to the imagery and a hint of frantic, narcotic fuelled velocity to the delivery of some of the songs on Street-Legal that hadn't been present in his studio work since the mid 60s.

On Street-Legal Dylan's interest in the structure of his songs is prominent and his fascination for rhyme and wordplay is clearly evident. I've said before that Dylan's intoxication by the possibilities of rhyme is like Shakespeare's addiction to quibbles (playing on words); they both seem happy to follow wherever the compulsion leads them. If the larger work (the song, the speech etc.) ultimately loses out they shrug and think it's well lost. Fortunately, given how good both of them are at what they do it isn't often that the larger work does suffer - and personally, if it does I tend to shrug along with them and think, "So what, the rhyme's so brilliant and unexpected. The punning is so superbly funny, sly and dirty, it's worth it."

I'm still thrilled by Dylan's audacity in presenting us with such a new soundscape. And over time whether he intended it or not his imagery on the album seems to have attained the burnished intricacy and significance of Homer's description of the shield of Achilles (or Virgil's of the shield of Aeneas) - or of some vast C15th - C16th allegorical painting.

I'm not sure whether we can agree on what a classic is or if Street-Legal is a classic or if will it become a classic - so either brace yourself for elimination
Or else your hearts must have the courage for the changing of the guards


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PostPosted: Fri August 17th, 2018, 15:30 GMT 
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:idea:
Listen to the album on my way home from work tonight.

Think about above post.

Note to self= 'It's not just loud you schmuck'.


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PostPosted: Sat August 18th, 2018, 13:58 GMT 
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Great lyrics. Señor, Changing of the Guard, Where are You Tonight and We Better Talk This Over stand out lyrically.

Love the sound of New Pony. Came out during a great time of my life, high school.

I'm not musically savvy enough to understand the musical criticism.


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PostPosted: Sat August 18th, 2018, 20:26 GMT 

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charlesdarwin wrote:
^Glad to see hyphen-pedantry is still going, long may it continue. :)

My views on Street-Legal haven't changed. I remember another contributor once saying that Blood on the Tracks wasn't the break-up album, Street-Legal was the break-up album. Chronologically he was right, that's if you really believe in such a thing as the break-up album, of course. Certainly there's an underlying desperation to the imagery and a hint of frantic, narcotic fuelled velocity to the delivery of some of the songs on Street-Legal that hadn't been present in his studio work since the mid 60s.

On Street-Legal Dylan's interest in the structure of his songs is prominent and his fascination for rhyme and wordplay is clearly evident. I've said before that Dylan's intoxication by the possibilities of rhyme is like Shakespeare's addiction to quibbles (playing on words); they both seem happy to follow wherever the compulsion leads them. If the larger work (the song, the speech etc.) ultimately loses out they shrug and think it's well lost. Fortunately, given how good both of them are at what they do it isn't often that the larger work does suffer - and personally, if it does I tend to shrug along with them and think, "So what, the rhyme's so brilliant and unexpected. The punning is so superbly funny, sly and dirty, it's worth it."

I'm still thrilled by Dylan's audacity in presenting us with such a new soundscape. And over time whether he intended it or not his imagery on the album seems to have attained the burnished intricacy and significance of Homer's description of the shield of Achilles (or Virgil's of the shield of Aeneas) - or of some vast C15th - C16th allegorical painting.

I'm not sure whether we can agree on what a classic is or if Street-Legal is a classic or if will it become a classic - so either brace yourself for elimination
Or else your hearts must have the courage for the changing of the guards


This post is itself audacious...and damn it, it's the truth.


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PostPosted: Sun August 19th, 2018, 02:30 GMT 
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If this is a classic what is Highway 61? A classic classic? I don't like the sound of the musicians on Street Legal too much. I don't like anything Steve Douglas does on the album. Keyboardist Alan Pasqua once composed the CBS Evening News theme. oh boy! Some of his playing on this album would be better suited for television theme songs. If this album had been a trio of Dylan, Scheff and Wallace I know I would like it better. But it still doesn't have the songs to compete with BIABH, HWY 61 or BOB. As for 70s Dylan, I listen to Street Legal more than Slow Train, but a lot less than New Morning, Planet Waves, BOTT and Desire. Knockin' On Heaven's Door is so great it probably elevates Pat Garrett as well. I can't call SL a classic.


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PostPosted: Sun August 19th, 2018, 02:52 GMT 
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Ghost Of Lectricity wrote:
...Street Legal...Street Legal...

Oh man you're gonna get it double from McG!


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PostPosted: Mon August 20th, 2018, 01:54 GMT 

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It’s one of my faves


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PostPosted: Mon August 20th, 2018, 03:41 GMT 

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I listened to it twice yesterday. It's nowhere near one of his best albums. Middling at best.

Some great songs though.


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