CANADIAN singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen is having something of a renaissance of late, despite being an octogenarian.
He released his highest-charting album, Old Ideas, in 2012, and last year’s critically-acclaimed Popular Problems, which followed it to No 1 in the UK, the day after his 80th birthday.
This latest album is neither a live nor a studio album, consisting of a mixture of live performances and soundchecks, from his Old Ideas World Tour.
The 10 tracks show a master at work, his weather-worn voice in fine fettle, and the arrangements doing justice to some classic songs.
It starts with a wonderful rendition of old favourite Field Commander Cohen, and includes material all the way back to Joan of Arc, from 1971 album Songs Of Love And Hate.
The real gems are two Cohen originals, the up-tempo blues Got A Little Secret, and the slower Never Gave Nobody Trouble, and a couple of covers never previously recorded by Cohen - Georges Dor’s La Manic and George Jones’ Choices.
The standout moment, for me, is a superb performance of the masterpiece I Can’t Forget, which you’ll want to listen to again and again. 8/10. GW