Monday, December 1, 2014

Dylan Cover #166 Built To Spill "Jokerman"

In this ongoing Monday Series we will be exploring various artists versions of Bob Dylan song's. Today's tune is a cover by Built To Spill playing "Jokerman" 
In the beginning of this year we mentioned of a new collection of Dylan covers that we were very excited about. It has taken us some time but for the month of December we will focus on 5 songs from Bob Dylan In the 80's Vol 1. Put on your Members Only jacket and enjoy.  
Thoughts on Original:
The kick-start to his "back to rock and roll" album Infidels, "Jokerman" is a monster. A torrent of images, symbols, thoughts, proclamations, fears and fables; it feels like a dam was broken in Dylan's brain and all of these things just poured out. Musically it moves along but doesn't add much to the towering wordplay as the tune is dominated by the lyrics which seem almost never ending; Dylan has penned wordier tunes, but few feel as heavy as this. Flawed, but reaching for something, it is a not a great Dylan song but it is one that lets us peak into his brain a bit. For more on this tune, check out this post.

Thoughts on Cover Artist:
We have really dug on Built to Spill in the past but recent efforts and live shows have left us wanting. That said their official Live album and Perfect From Now On are consistently played on our ear buds and are exhilarating examples of melodic spacious guitar rock for any fan of amazing tunes.
Thoughts on Cover:
A cool pairing but, like a lot of BtS lately, it could have been so much more. One thing that stands out is the nice bass work laid down giving a bit of bubbling to the tune. The guitars are tame in comparison; how about giving it that live "Cortez The Killer" action and exploding the end out into a mega-jam? While nothing is wrong with this cover our hopes were just set a bit higher. 

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