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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars LC at his earliest and best
One of my favourite LC albums, and the sound on the CD is very good (far better than the record I have). 'Bird on a wire' and 'Tonight will be fine' are startlingly good and probably the highlight on a very consistent album - compilations never recapture the flow of the original albums. The songs might seem dated to those who weren't around at the release, but it is...
Published on 22 Nov 2004 by Keith_Joseph

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3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing Second Album
Cohen's second album was something of a disappointment after the beauty of Songs of Leonard Cohen. The songs here are less clearly defined. Although in the same style they simply don't have the impact of the first album. Bird on a Wire has become a Cohen classic but songs like The Butcher are just a sad reflection of what has gone before.

You Know Who I Am is...
Published 2 months ago by Mr. Peter Steward


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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars LC at his earliest and best, 22 Nov 2004
By 
Keith_Joseph (West Berkshire, England) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)    (TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
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This review is from: Songs from a Room (Audio CD)
One of my favourite LC albums, and the sound on the CD is very good (far better than the record I have). 'Bird on a wire' and 'Tonight will be fine' are startlingly good and probably the highlight on a very consistent album - compilations never recapture the flow of the original albums. The songs might seem dated to those who weren't around at the release, but it is Leonard Cohen in top form (his voice and content is more the 'younger man'). I do find 'The story of Isaac' and Abraham a bit too sad to listen to often ('God said to Abe go kill me a son' is far more jolly on Bob Dylan's superb 'Highway 61 revisited'). 'Songs from a room' contrasts well with LC's later 80s & 90's output such as the excellent 'Various Positions', 'I'm your man' and 'The Future'. Plus Amazon are often virtually giving away many Leonard Cohen CDs for around 3 to 4 each.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I have tried in my way to be free, 25 Feb 2003
By 
Pieter Uys "Toypom" (Johannesburg) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Songs From A Room (Audio CD)
Cohen followed up his debut album with another masterpiece, this collection of magnificent songs of solitude, despair and resignation. Besides The Partisan, a song about the French resistance with its beautiful French verses and female vocals, all compositions are by Cohen. The most popular number here is Bird On A Wire that has been covered by artists as diverse as Johnny Cash, Joe Cocker, Judy Collins, Rita Coolidge, Tim Hardin, The Neville Brothers and Jennifer Warnes. For some reason, the opening lines of Bunch Of Lonesome Heroes make me think of Frodo's journey to Mordor (in Lord Of The Rings): "A bunch of lonesome and very quarrelsome heroes/Were smoking out upon the open road." Other highlights include The Story Of Isaac and The Old Revolution, in both of which Cohen's characteristic Biblical imagery surfaces, and the somber Lady Midnight with its many levels of meaning. Seems So Long Ago is a wistful confessional dirge whilst You Know Who I Am is a delicate love poem with esoteric undertones: "I am the one who loves changing from nothing to one". The mood lightens up on the closing track Tonight Will Be Fine with its catchy melody, driving rhythm and erotic lyric to end the album on a more optimistic note, although even here the sadness is just a sigh away. Cohen's sublime music has a transcendent, spiritual quality. These haunting songs "from a room" have lost none of their poetic impact after 3 decades; their grace, elegance and beauty shine on.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Make Room In Your Soul For This One, 26 Aug 2007
By 
pikeyboy (carmarthen, uk) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Songs from a Room (Audio CD)
Cohen was unhappy with the little frills John Simon added as enhancements to several of the tracks on his eponymous debut, and wanted a sparser, less ornamented production. Bob Johnson was just the man for the job. Not only that, he also filled in on keyboard as part of Cohen's backing band - The Army - on the subsequent tour of Songs From A Room, and produced Live Songs, on which cracking versions of those songs can be heard in all their closely-miked glory.
Strange to think of it now, but Songs From A Room went straight into the British Top 10, and spawned an unlikely hit in the form of The Old Revolution (I wouldn't have believed it if I hadn't heard it from Dale Winton's own lips on Pick of the Pops on sundays). This album was also responsible for giving us what must surely be Leonard's signature masterpiece, the evergreen and unremitting Bird On A Wire. Story Of Isaac, which follows, is possibly the greatest song ever written in response to the Vietnam War, plumbing psychological depths very few would wish to venture into, and its central, apposite biblical analogy lends it a resonance that reaches well beyond simply the one combat zone. Elsewhere, The Partisan, The Butcher, The Old Revolution, and A Bunch Of Lonesome Heroes lyrically reinforce the poet's hesitant call-to-arms to the post-sixties generation. Just as the themes of the first album seemed to revolve around travel and lonliness, this time round its about war and freedom. For any fan of LC's, this album is as essential as breathing, though the perception of both Songs From A Room and its successor, the truly bittersweet pill that is Songs Of Love And Hate, long ago I fear, forever cemented in the public mind this hideous image of the 20th century's finest wordsmith as some doom-saying, suicide merchant. Check it out for yourself......
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23 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't slit your wrists just yet...., 27 Mar 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Songs From A Room (Audio CD)
Personally, I much prefer this one to "Songs of Leonard Cohen". Despite Cohen's famous reputation for being depressing, I always find this album has the opposite effect on me, while his first is real suicide-music. There are 10 songs on this album and at least 8 are genuine classics - there's the spine-tingling "Story of Isaac", the wryly sardonic "The Butcher" and the sheer brilliance of "Tonight Will be Fine". All in all, it's 10 more reasons not to do yourself in just yet....
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 9 July 2014
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This review is from: Songs from a Room (Audio CD)
how could you go wrong with leonard
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3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing Second Album, 10 May 2014
By 
Mr. Peter Steward "petersteward" (Norwich, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Songs from a Room (Audio CD)
Cohen's second album was something of a disappointment after the beauty of Songs of Leonard Cohen. The songs here are less clearly defined. Although in the same style they simply don't have the impact of the first album. Bird on a Wire has become a Cohen classic but songs like The Butcher are just a sad reflection of what has gone before.

You Know Who I Am is one of the highlights but the instrumentation of many of the tracks seems rather strange with a Jew's Harp randomly added to many of the offerings. Of course it's not a bad album but I can imagine that at the time there were a number of disappointed fans who expected something a little stronger.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Songs from a room, 25 April 2014
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This review is from: Songs from a Room (Audio CD)
This would seem a good time to upset the purists!? Back in the '60,s, after a party you would crash on the floor (or ceiling !), and the only albums you would play were this, or Love's 'Forever Changes'. I bought the original on vinyl, and was thinking of converting it to MP3, but thought 'how about getting a 'best of' cd instead'. Dohhh!!!! . Two collection albums, that did NOT include 'Old Revolution', 'You know who I am', 'Lonesome Heroes', or 'Partisan'. ????? What the f.........! Are they having a laugh or what! This album outsold all of his offerings since, and personally I wouldn't want a compilation of his later stuff. This album is his 'Sgt. Pepper'. It can't be bettered. It is a classic. You should buy it. Worship it. Marry it. Just buy it. End of.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Memories, 21 April 2014
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This review is from: Songs from a Room (Audio CD)
Even better than I remember from my twenties, and brought back lots of memories. I bought it because I went to a tribute concert, and had forgotten what a brilliant songwriter Cohen was.
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5.0 out of 5 stars My first and initially favourite, 13 Nov 2013
By 
P. Pitchford "Phil Pitchford" (North Wales) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Songs from a Room (Audio CD)
I always loved this Cohen album but after listening to his recent Live in Londan and seeing him live in manchester this year I feel his voice is stringer at 79. Still a seminal album though
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5.0 out of 5 stars What can I say - he is sublime, 5 Nov 2013
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This review is from: Songs from a Room (Audio CD)
Not as good as first LP but still a masterpiece, as is all his work - including Death of a Ladies Man, even though not everyone agrees!
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