Leonard Cohen’s Old Ideas

B y Jason Webber

Decades after eating Chinese oranges with Suzanne, waxing poetic about torn blue raincoats and predicting a future that is “murder,” 77-years young Leonard Cohen has lived and loved enough for three lifetimes. But his new album Old Ideas proves that the self-described “lazy bastard in a suit” will not be going quietly into the night. Over the span of 10 songs, Cohen wrestles with his eternal demons of faith, redemption and mortality as only he can — with class, grace and his trademark wry humor. After a lifetime of searching and pondering, Cohen still hasn’t decoded the genomes of Love and Woman but he’s not about to cease his quest, as evidenced by bitter ballads like “Crazy To Love You” and “Different Sides.” Only Cohen could write such cryptically endearing lyrics like “The mouse ate the crumb/Then the cat ate the crust/Now they’ve fallen in love/They’re talking in tongues.” Nearly 30 years after he announced he was paying his rent in the Tower of Song, Old Ideas proves that Cohen is no longer a tenant — he is lord and ruler of that mystical property. Because he is Leonard Cohen. And this is what he does.

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