Live in Dublin reviews

This section is dedicated to the new studio album and the Dublin concert video
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Live in Dublin reviews

Post by jarkko » Tue Dec 02, 2014 10:10 am ... ve-dublin/
Leonard Cohen: Live In Dublin
Written by Hal Horowitz December 1st, 2014

Leonard Cohen
Live in Dublin
5 out of 5 stars

Concerts by veteran musicians, even ones as respected as Leonard Cohen, don’t get any classier than this. The 80 year old singer/songwriter says more with a momentary raised eyebrow, a dip down to one knee or a tip of his trademarked black fedora than Mick Jagger does in a show of frantic dashing around an enormous stage.

This 3CD/1DVD or Blu-ray set captures Cohen, his remarkably talented 6 piece band and a trio of female backup singers in a full 2 ½ hour performance in front of an adoring Dublin audience. The video of one entire Sept. 2013 gig is recorded with high definition cameras and edited with a subtle precision. Cohen’s reflective, occasionally somber, consistently intriguing music and poetry wouldn’t be nearly as powerful with the typical fast cut style so often used on live DVDs. Instead this is edited with a slow, sure hand. Cameras linger on Cohen’s still handsome and expressive face, fixating on the band members during solos and occasionally hovering over the proceedings to capture the action from behind the stage looking into the audience. It truly provides the viewer with the best seat in the house.

Cohen is in a spirited, frisky mood, bounding onto the stage, doing short dances, smiling at his backup players, and engaging with the audience as he ambles through a sprawling 29 song set that includes almost everything anyone would want to hear (although “Sisters of Mercy” is MIA) from a catalog that stretches back to 1968’s “Bird on a Wire.” The musicians and singers are all dressed, like Cohen, in sharp black suits and the simple yet enormously effective lights bathe the stage in deep blues, reds and greens. The singer’s distinctive baritone, dry yet emotive talk/singing style and the crystal clear recording quality focuses attention on his dynamic, sometimes humorous, always poetic lyrics. The interplay with his three backup singers also brings depth and a sensuality often lacking from the studio versions, making some of these laconic and extended performances definitive. Like his 2009 Live in London CD/DVD, which had a similar presentation with many of the same songs and arrangements, a few spoken word segments modify the flow.

Musically, the Canadian born Cohen combines blues, jazz and folk along with strains of European and gypsy styles for a unique, elegant and diverse mix that makes the perfect foundation for his words and presentation. He is also generous with the spotlight, giving extended time to his world class musicians (string instrument virtuoso Javier Mas is particularly impressive) longtime partner Sharon Robinson and the Webb sisters whose angelic voices mesh as one. The only non-Cohen composition is a closing cover of “Save the Last Dance for Me,” played with all the bittersweet melancholy often obscured in other versions. It caps off a remarkably vivacious and career encompassing evening that sets a new standard for capturing icons like Cohen who rely on restrained intricacies in texture and nuance to communicate their art.
1988, 1993: Helsinki||2008: Manchester|Oslo|London O2|Berlin|Helsinki|London RAH|| 2009: New York Beacon|Berlin|Venice|Barcelona|Las Vegas|San José||2010: Salzburg|Helsinki|Gent|Bratislava|Las Vegas|| 2012: Gent|Helsinki|Verona|| 2013: New York|Pula|Oslo|||
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Re: Live in Dublin reviews

Post by alb123 » Tue Dec 02, 2014 11:34 am

A nice write up! Although, I get the impression the author is implying that "Bird on a Wire" is the oldest material featured on this CD/DVD collection. Perhaps Mr. Horowitz forgot about Leonard's first album... ;-) :lol:
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Las Vegas, NV - Dec 11, 2010 (Final Show of Leonard's 3 year World Tour) INCREDIBLE!
Boston, MA - Dec 15, 2012 (Best L.C. concert I've been to!)
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Re: Live in Dublin reviews

Post by AlanM » Tue Dec 02, 2014 12:40 pm

Ah well, we can't expect reviewers to be as perfect as Mr Cohen!
I thought that The Partisan could have been included as a non Cohen composed song, although he has been singing it so long, so often and so brilliantly most people think he did write it. The insert booklet gives him 4th credit, does that make it a Cohen composition?
The timing on my discs is 3 hours 10 minutes for Live in Dublin video, plus 16 minutes for the 3 extra tracks. The CDs run 3 hours and 1 minute. Both well over 2 1/2 hours.
Also 30 Dublin songs, not 29.
Otherwise not a bad review, just a slightly inaccurate one.

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Re: Live in Dublin reviews

Post by astranger » Thu Dec 04, 2014 10:15 am

not sure if this is for official reviews, per se, but i'll post mine anyway..

Like the lot of us I've been eagerly awaiting this release for a while now, and I have to say I have very few complaints. It's great to have a record of Leonard and the band on top of their game and blowing through their set. In my opinion, as great as Live in London is, I hear a band that hasn't completely found its footing given that the tour was only in its 2nd month of infancy. Leonard and the band were still finding the nuances that have made these incredible songs somehow even more magical. We're not watching a comeback show, there is no lack of confidence here. Leonard's voice is better here and I love when he hits the higher notes and sings along like in First We Take Manhattan. It's simply incredible to watch Leonard own the stage; I find the Live in London show to be a bit reserved for the aforementioned reasons, and we got a great taste of the band having found their stride in Songs From The Road. For as dark as some of the songs may get, what we're watching is pure joy. Pure joy in the spirit of song, pure joy from watching our favorite singer still in the prime of his career, pure joy from experiencing some of the best music in the history music. Leonard's famous humility is joyful. The only reservations I have regarding the CDs is the omission of Leonard speaking, especially during the final moments of Closing Time, but that's a tiny complaint. This lives up to the expectation, and watching the concert brings me back to Brooklyn in 2012. We all know his Dublin shows are magical, wonderful to have some of that magic officially put in the canon.
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Re: Live in Dublin reviews

Post by stephencharlton » Wed Dec 10, 2014 7:57 pm

A good review, thankyou
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Re: Live in Dublin reviews

Post by MarieM » Fri Dec 12, 2014 3:26 am

Here are some recent reviews of Live In Dublin.

Irish Times - 4 out of 5 stars ... -1.2034427

Renowned for Sound - 4.5 out of 5 stars ... in-dublin/

De Morgan - 4 out of 5 stars ... 98/25fte6/

Pitchfork - 8 out of 10 ... in-dublin/

Creative Loafing -- 5 out of 5 stars ... d=12789312

PopMatters -- 8 out of 10 ... in-dublin/

The Line of Best Fit - 8 out of 10 ... -in-dublin
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Re: Live in Dublin reviews

Post by jerry » Mon Dec 15, 2014 7:39 pm

Strange that there are so few reviews on Amazon for Dublin.
Poetry is just the evidence of life. If your life is burning well, poetry is just the ash.
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Re: Live in Dublin reviews

Post by jarkko » Tue Jan 20, 2015 7:05 am ... in-dublin/
Renowned For Sound
(From Marie)
Album Review: Leonard Cohen – Live In Dublin
Published On December 9, 2014 | By Kirsten Maree

Rating: 4.5 / 5 stars

You would be hard pressed to find a more celebrated musician than Leonard Cohen. The infamous singer, songwriter, poet and novelist has received almost all of music’s highest honours, including induction to the American Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame, a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, induction to the Songrwriter’s Hall of Fame, induction to the Canadian Music Hall of Fame and induction to the Canadian Songwriter’s Hall of Fame. Not only that, but the now 80 year old was also the recipient of the Companion of the Order Of Canada, the nation’s highest honour. He has released 13 studio albums since his 1967 debut album Songs of Leonard Cohen and his most recent record, 2014′s Popular Problems has reached number 1 in 31 countries. Loved by fans, critics and peers alike, Cohen now brings us a new way to celebrate his lifetime of astounding achievements with a 3 disc CD/DVD release, Leonard Cohen Live In Dublin.

Bruce Eder has said of Cohen that “he is one of the most fascinating and enigmatic singer/songwriters of the late 60′s and has retained an audience across four decades of music making… second only to Bob Dylan” and nothing proves the point like this recording of his 2012 full length concert. Time has been kind to Cohen, losing none of his appeal or thirst for audience connection and the ride he takes us on is like a trip through time. Fascinating and enigmatic is absolutely the perfect description. Filmed for the first time in high definition, the sound is crystal clear and the mood vibrant as ever. The three hour concert starts on Disc One with a few more recent tracks thrown in amongst some Cohen live show staples, namely Amen and Come Healing of 2012. Bird On A Wire features here however as the early standout. Disc Two revisits some old favourites that Cohen himself has admitted should probably have been retired long ago. I could perhaps agree with him on Suzanne, but a bigger lie was never told when it comes to Hallelujah.

One of the most beautiful songs in history, in my opinion at least, should never be passed over and the chance to hear it from the man himself after so many cover versions is truly a gift. He performs it with all the passion and emotion of the original and a Cohen set would only suffer without it. Disc Three features a lengthy encore performance boasting the cheeky Closing Time and the never before heard Doc Pomus cover Save The Last Dance For Me. Leonard Cohen has been covered by some of the greatest musician’s of all time, including Bob Dylan, Nina Simone, Jeff Buckley, Johnny Cash, Tori Amos and Nick Cave to name a few and here it is easy to see what. Not only is the music stunning and timeless, but Cohen is mesmerising. This record is an education in music history and appreciation, and I believe the next best thing to seeing Leonard Cohen live. Rarely is a live recording so completely pristine and captivating, but anything less wouldn’t have done justice to this incredible body of work from one of the most influential songwriters in history.
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