Leonard Cohen - Ten New Songs

NME.COM feature on Leonard Cohen - Ten New Songs album including album review, artwork, tracks, listen now, tour dates, discography and more.

Album Review

Release date: 30 November 2000

Leonard Cohen - Ten New Songs

Cohen, Leonard : Ten New Songs

King of misery returns from monastry with synthesizer.

Even his most optimistic fans could've been forgiven for thinking that they'd heard the last of Leonard Cohen, the most urbanely depressed of rock's elder statesmen. After all, he's just turned 67, hasn't released an album in nine years and, most pertinently, appeared to have found contentment of sorts living as a Buddhist monk in California. Fears of a red wine...

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  • Oct 16, 2001

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Leonard Cohen - Ten New Songs Videos

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Leonard Cohen News

Leonard Cohen debuts new song in Dublin

Leonard Cohen debuts new song in Dublin

'I've Got A Secret' borrows words from another unreleased song, 'Feels So Good'

Leonard Cohen reschedules UK tour dates for religious reasons

Leonard Cohen reschedules UK tour dates for religious reasons

Singer changes Leeds and London shows in September as they were were scheduled on days of solemn religious observance

Leonard Cohen announces UK tour

Leonard Cohen announces UK tour

Legendary Canadian singer will play a string of dates in August and September

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Leonard Cohen - Ten New Songs: Wikipedia Album Entry


"I'm back on Boogie Street," declares Leonard Cohen on two different songs in this collection, titled with characteristic understatement Ten New Songs. (Previous album titles have included Songs of Leonard Cohen, Songs from a Room, and Recent Songs.) More poet than musician, Cohen has, since his early albums, tended to rely on collaborations with musicians to put together his music: John Lissauer on 1974's New Skin for the Old Ceremony, Henry Lewy on 1979's Recent Songs, and, notoriously, Phil Spector on 1977's Death of a Ladies' Man. On Ten New Songs, his partner is former backup singer Sharon Robinson, who co-wrote "Everybody Knows" on 1988's I'm Your Man and earns co-writing credit on all the material here. She has also conjured the musical backgrounds ("All tracks arranged, programmed, and performed by Sharon Robinson, reads the credit), and she harmonizes with Cohen throughout. But all collaborators (even Spector) are in the service of Cohen's poetic vision, which remains the dominant element on this elegiac set. After a restatement of purpose on "In My Secret Life," he turns in a moody set of reflections on decline, even alluding to fellow poet Robert Frost's famous "Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening" in "A Thousand Kisses Deep": "And maybe I had miles to drive/And promises to keep/You ditch it all to stay alive/A thousand kisses deep." The songs are full of leave-taking, with titles like "Alexandra Leaving" and "You Have Loved Enough" accurately describing the tone, concluding with the prayer-like valedictory "The Land of Plenty," which gently remonstrates with the consumer society the poet has always engaged and rejected: "May the lights in the land of plenty/Shine on the truth some day." Even in the quietude of Cohen's catalog, the result seems like a coda.

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