1001 Albums 0063-0064

Published June 03, 2014


My continued journey through the albums featured in the book
1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.


0063: The Byrds: Fifth Dimension (1966)
An album I've already heard.

Most of this album was recorded after founder member Gene Clark had left the band. Clark being a supremely talented song writer, this was of course a great loss. That said, the band coped admirably without him, although not every song is a gem: the unstructured instrumental Captain Soul is a particular pain on the ear - at least on the ear(s) attached to my head. Still, with great classics such as 'Eight Miles High' on there, perhaps one shouldn't complain too much.

If I have any general critisism towards The Byrds it is that their vocals can sometimes sound a bit anonymous. Although it's not exactly belting I'm after, on some songs I wish there would be just a teensie-weensie bit more energy in the singing.

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0064: Bob Dylan: Blonde On Blonde (1966)
An album I've already heard.

This double-album is one of those albums that has been regarded as one-of-the-best-ever since the '70s or something; perhaps even since it was released. Its opening track, 'Rainy Day Women #12 & 35', was probably the first Dylan song I ever heard: I had the single as a child and played it a lot. At the time I guess I simply responded to it as a happy tune, not really having any clue what "everybody must get stoned" may have referred to.

As for the album as a whole, my objections are the same as for most other Bob Dylan long-players: much as I admire the song writing, a whole album's worth of a singer struggling to hit the right notes - and the piercing sound of that damned harmonica - just isn't my cup of tea.

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The Byrds: Fifth Dimension.

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Bob Dylan: Blonde On Blonde.

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