The Essential Leonard Cohen Limited Edition, Original recording remastered
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|9. Chelsea Hotel #2|
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See all 18 tracks on this disc
|1. Ain't No Cure For Love|
|2. Take This Waltz|
|3. First We Take Manhatten|
|4. Dance Me To The End Of Love (Live)|
|5. The Future|
|7. Waiting for the Miracle|
|8. Closing Time|
|10. In My Secret Life|
See all 13 tracks on this disc
The best collection yet from one of pop music's most influential, enduring and fascinating artists! Includes Suzanne; Bird on a Wire; Sisters of Mercy; Famous Blue Raincoat; First We Take Manhattan; Ain't No Cure; Night Comes On; I'm Your Man; Tower of Song; Chelsea Hotel #2; Hallelujah, and more.
This two-disc retrospective traces the Canadian bard's musical maturity from poet and novelist who sang a little to multidimensional artist whose oracular vocals and increasingly rich arrangements are every bit as compelling as his verse. Even when Cohen came to prominence through the 1960s songcraft of "Suzanne" and "Bird on a Wire," the "folksinger" tag never really fit. Later highlights ranging from the deadpan drollery of "Tower of Song" and "Everybody Knows" to the apocalyptic anthemry of "First We Take Manhattan" and "Democracy" suggest that other labels might be more appropriate: cabaret surrealist, spiritual gadfly, sensual prophet, agent provocateur. Cohen chose the selections, drawing more than half of the 31 tracks from three landmark albums--his 1967 debut Songs of Leonard Cohen, 1988's I'm Your Man, and 1992's The Future--along with four from 2001's Ten New Songs. The collection justifies its title as deep as it goes, though it's a shame that Cohen's commercial profile couldn't justify the more elaborate box set his artistry warrants (one that would at least include lyrics and musician credits). Those who sample the consistently inspired music here might come to the conclusion that everything Cohen records is essential. --Don McLeese
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Top Customer Reviews
Nowadays, my musical interests are much wider and my pockets deeper, so I took a chance on Cohen's CD Ten New Songs when it was released several years ago. It took a while to get into, but I liked some of the songs immediately. My rule with music is that if I like a CD I've purchased by an unfamiliar artist, I buy something else by that artist also in order to give myself a broader enjoyment and understanding of their work. And so it went with Cohen. I picked up several more CDs and liked them enough to feel confident that I would be pleased with The Essential Leonard Cohen.
I have read all the reviews posted here, both positive and negative, and observe that its a given with any compilation that one will always feel that some songs were included that shouldn't have been and some obvious winners omitted. My candidate for ejection is Alexandra Leaving. I would have much preferred to see Boogie Street included or possibly Joan of Arc in its stead.
I think the CD is nicely divided into two periods because as several reviewers have noted, Cohen seems to have two voices. A lot of songs on the first CD one might classify as neo-folk, for lack of a better term. On this, I like Suzanne, The Partisan, Hallelujah, and I'm Your Man best.
On the second CD, the music is more in the direction of soul tinged rock with the occasional nod to country. And Cohen's deepening voice on the second CD imbues the music with more mystery and even occasional menace.Read more ›
Line service & extremely well priced we
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For some friends, I would make compilation tapes, and here is where one becomes aware of the problem with Cohen. Apart, perhaps, for his first album, Cohen is not at all well served by albums. He is far more of a singles artist, and some of his best individual songs can be found on otherwise miserable albums. A compilation can, in addition, mask how many really bad songs Cohen has recorded over the years. Luckily, at his best, he is very, very good. An anthology, therefore, is by far the best way to present Cohen's work, in comparison to other performers like The Clash or Van Morrison, who are better discovered in their original albums. It is even true of artists sometimes compared to Cohen, like Nick Cave.
So, how does this anthology rate? Actually, pretty good. In the compilations I have made either for myself or for friends, this contains nearly every song that I have found most essential. The only significant omission that I can find is "Joan of Arc," which I dearly wish had been included.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
A wonderful collection. My wife (for whose birthday it was purchased) listens as I write.Published 2 months ago by paul
I like this album for the good song Susan, mostly. As well Leonard's voice seems much better then than now.Published 20 months ago by Bill Kinney
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