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Dancing in the Dragon's Jaws [Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered, Extra tracks]

Bruce CockburnAudio CD
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

Price: $21.95
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Biography

Street Date: January 15, 2002

"The whole point of writing songs is to share experiences with people," says Bruce Cockburn, looking back on a career that includes 26 albums, numerous international awards, including the Canadian Music Hall of Fame and the Tenco Award for Lifetime Achievement in Italy, 20 gold and platinum records in Canada, and countless concert performances ... Read more in Amazon's Bruce Cockburn Store

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (November 19, 2002)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered, Extra tracks
  • Label: Rounder / Umgd
  • ASIN: B00006LLPS
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #342,557 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Creation Dream
2. Hills of Morning
3. Badlands Flashback
4. Northern Lights
5. After the Rain
6. Wondering Where the Lions Are
7. Incandescent Blue
8. No Footprints
9. Dawn Music (Bonus Track)
10. Bye Bye Idi (Bonus Track)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A High Water Mark Remastered Brilliantly December 3, 2002
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Make no mistake about it, if you were to own only one Bruce Cockburn CD in your life, it ought to be this one. The sophistication of the guitar work, the tunes themselves, the French and English lyrics presented Bruce on the cusp of a lot of transitions, and while he may have been dancing in the dragon's jaws, he also produced the most compellngly engaged music spiritually of his career. This is the moment of his big bang, and what a moment of creation it was, and still is.
The extra track adds to the ambience of the disc, but, frankly, it could have been left off anyway. The original sequence of songs is so strong, that any appendage is no more than that.
The remastering is brilliant. It was a brilliant sounding album when it first came out and when it first made the transition to CD. It just keeps getting better.
By all means, purchase this disc. I've worn out 4 vinyl versions and 2 other cds, so I can tell you you will return to this often throughout your life.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still powerful after all these years December 11, 2003
Format:Audio CD
This remains Cockburn's greatest work - standing as a stunning collection of songs, but also as a great sequential album. It contains the typical socio-political commentary found in his other recordings, but also has more than the usual melodic strains to sing along to, and the guitar playing is fantastic. The two extra tracks on this issue are instrumental, and reflect the era of the album well - it's easy to see why Cockburn was voted one of the world's best singer/songwriters so many times over.
If you're starting out with Cockburn, get this first, then follow it up with 'Stealing Fire' (similar era, but much more grittily orchestrated), then 'Humans' (some great poetry on this), then perhaps 'Nothing But A Burning Light' (beautiful songs and a more accepting, positive outlook than some of his earlier works).
It's a pity he has been described as Canada's best-kept secret - this double-edged term serves to keep him out of the mainstream, where his messages are most keenly needed.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best from a Canadian Master May 31, 2003
Format:Audio CD
Bruce Cockburn has an amazing catalog of songs and albums, but I think without any doubt, most fans would call "Dancing in the Dragon's Jaw" his best work. Although he came close on "Stealing Fire" and some others, this remains the guage by which all others must be judged. The acoustic guitar work is stunning and the poetry of the lyrics outshines the vast majority of songwriters of this or any era.
This recording appeared in the same time frame as Ry Cooder's "Bop til You Drop" , and in many ways I equate these two musicians as Canadian-American counterparts. Each is able to reach the essence of their country's roots as well as exploring the musical styles of various world cultures.
Unless you have lost your soul, you will find something to love about this music.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wondering Where The Christians Are? February 15, 2006
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Whether intended or not, 'Dancing In The Dragon's Jaw' is by far the most overtly Christian of all Bruce Cockburn's albums/CD's. While all his earlier works were also deeply spiritual in content, this album with songs like 'Wondering Where The Lions Are', 'Creation Dawn' and 'No Footprints' seemed to exude the Christian message and finally caught the attention of the Protestant community-at-large. Despite his attempt to dis-associate himself from mainstream evangelical Christianity, this album was an overnight hit with young believers and he was immediately embraced as one of the flock. It was probably this unwanted association with Protestantism that accelerated his departure from the mellow folk roots of his early work to pursue a hard-edged, secular rock sound ever since.

Whatever the case, Christian or otherwise, this -11 track re-issue of the CD (containing 2 unnecessary bonus tracks) is without doubt the most upbeat, joyous collection of songs in the immense and eclectic Cockburn collection.

Highly Recommended!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cockburn's best work December 25, 2005
By David
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
After 25 years, this album remains my favorite of Cockburn's, and in fact my favorite from any artist. Cockburn's work from other eras is compelling and from time to time even inspired. Dancin' in the Dragon's Jaws, however, reaches a plateau of transcendent perfection that is simply stunning. The songs are beautifully written and fit perfectly in their melodies. (To be honest, some of Cockburn's later poetry seems shoe-horned into the tunes he writes.) The tunes are fleshed out in a rich mix of acoustic guitar, piano, and percussion. Beneath everything is the power of Cockburn's poetry. He is reaching for a deep spiritual vision that is glimpsed "just beyond the range of normal sight" but never fully grasped. The overall effect is both spiritual longing and tranquility. It has never failed that whenever I have shared this album with friends that they have loved it at once and invariably bought a copy for themselves. If you aren't yet a Cockburn fan, this is the place to start.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful Album is Among Cockburn's Best June 26, 2010
Format:Audio CD
It's difficult to say which of Bruce Cockburn's albums is his best for several reasons. First, he's put out over 20 albums during his career (not counting live and compilation pieces). Second, he's spanned a lot of different sounds and styles over the decades. Lastly, none of his work is bad and much of it is great. That said, 1979's Dancing in the Dragon's Jaws ranks among his best records. Released when most of Cockburn's music was still centered around his acoustic guitar work (later records increasingly incorporate his similarly tasteful and skillful electric guitar playing), Dancing is a relaxed, beautiful, and joyous work. Several songs on the album have a world beat influence with vibes & various percussion embellishments fleshing out the organic mix acoustic guitar, bass, piano, and drums. Production suits the songs well with a mellow late 70's pop-rock vibe.

The opening song "Creation Dream" sets the thematic tone of the album with it's spiritual focus and typically poetic and diffuse description of said spiritual dream: "Centered on silence, counting on nothing/I saw you dancing on the sea/and everything was dark except for sparks the wind struck from your hair/sparks that turned to wings around you/angel voices mixed with seabird cries/fields of motion surging outward/questions that contain their own replies." It might be tempting to dismiss Cockburn's songs on Dancing in the Dragon's Jaws as self-indulgent or silly were it not for the warm conviction that underlies the songs and the tight and often-times catchy musical arrangements. This isn't prog-rock theatrics (think Yes, for example) but is more like the diary of a Christian mystic - which if you read interviews with Cockburn from the period when the album was made is probably a fairly accurate description.
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