This exceptionally melodious album opens with the catchy up-tempo track Thunder On The Mountain with its lilting beat which is followed by Spirit On The Water, a tender love song, also tuneful and engaging with nice touches of harmonica. Rollin' And Tumblin' with its snatches of jangling guitar is a succulent slice of folk rock.
One of the highlights on this impressive work with its outstanding songs is the melancholy When The Deal Goes Down, a philosophical musing on the journey of life, on mortality and loyalty, with a beautiful melody and moving poetic lyrics, like the track Where Teardrops Fall on Oh Mercy.
The tempo picks up again for Someday Baby, a rhythmic pop number, before the mood turns serious for Workingman's Blues, a flowing ballad, and then somber turns to sad on the poignant Beyond The Horizon with its redemptive imagery.
There is another stirring love song in the form of Nettie Moore, a slow soulful number with clever lyrical twists and a spiritual undertone, whilst The Levee's Gonna Break is another rhythmic up-tempo track with a gripping melody, and the album concludes with the bluesy Aint' Talkin', a long atmospheric excursion.
The powerful songs on Modern Times are delivered with guitars, bass, cello, piano, percussion, drums, violin, viola and mandolin for a rich, full sound and Dylan's voice sounds great. I highly recommend this brilliant album which is on a par with his best work of recent years such as Time Out Of Mind.