"Highway 61 Revisited" should be on every "Top Ten non-classical recordings of the 20th century" lists, for many reasons: Its courage and innovation, and the influence it had on the music of its time, and for the impact it continues to have; the strength of its strange but potently poetic lyrics, and the quality of its musicianship; and most of all, because it is fabulous listening. Dylan turned the musical world on its head when he went "electric", and the musicians he assembled to back him are legendary; Michael Bloomfield, guitar / Al Kooper, organ & piano / Paul Griffin, piano and organ / Bobby Gregg, drums / Harvey Goldstein, bass / Charley McCoy, guitar / Frank Owens, piano / Russ Savakus, bass. The music they make sounds as fresh today as when I first heard it four decades ago; everyone will have their favorites, mine are "Ballad of a Thin Man" and "Tombstone Blues", but all nine tracks are brilliant and powerful. Fortunately CBS/Sony has released this CD in the same format as the original LP, with Dylan's incomprehensible but terrific liner notes ("On the slow train time does not interfere..."), and with no extra tracks to ruin the feel of the music. It is a recording that is like clear water when compared to the stagnant musical times we live in, and no CD collection is truly complete without it. The sound is excellent and total playing time is 51'37.
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