Leonard Cohen

"Live In Dublin"

(Sony); Singer/songwriter

By ​Phil ​Bennett

Leonard Cohen has already released a studio album this year, so what else should an 80 year old veteran do but release a two and a half hour live triple cd/dvd to cap off an extremely productive 2014.

A true (follows his own vision) master craftsman (one of the world’s greatest songwriters) Cohen is one of those artists who, if you love him, you adore him, and if you don’t, you really don’t quite get him at all.

And if you fall into the former category, this is a package you will be pleased as punch with.

There are so many stunning songs here - So Long Marianne, I’m Your Man, Hallelujah - the list goes on like a roll call of bedsit classics.

And then there’s that voice, which seems to scrape lower and lower each year, rasping like stubble across your cheek. A voice that speaks with a gracious smile and a subtle glance, as if in wonder that people still admire him after all these years.

On this night it wafts along atop insidious hip swaying grooves that suggest rather than insist, whether it’s from the deliciously plucked strings of Everybody Knows or the honey-thick Hammond organ tones of Bird On A Wire

There’s actually too much going on here to take it all in first time. Like a sumptuous feast, its delights should be savoured slowly and without greed.

A marathon worth well running, Live In Dublin, shows a man who really is at the top of his game.

Quite extraordinary.

​Phil ​Bennett

Musician, actor, singer, music reviewer, Phil’s interests cover a lot of bases and this is reflected in the music he writes about. From blues to soul, ambient to electronic, Phil writes about artists he feels are interesting, true to their craft and worthy of your ears.