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Old Ideas [Import]

Leonard CohenAudio CD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (214 customer reviews)

Price: $26.56 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
 : Includes FREE MP3 version of this album.
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Amazon Price New from Used from
MP3 Music, 10 Songs, 1 Digital Booklet, 2012 $10.99  
Audio CD, Import, 2012 $9.99  
Audio CD, Import, 2012 $26.56  
Vinyl, Limited Edition, 2012 --  

Amazon's Leonard Cohen Store


Image of album by Leonard Cohen


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For four decades, Leonard Cohen has been one of the most important and influential songwriters of our time, a figure whose body of work achieves greater depths of mystery and meaning as time goes on. His songs have set a virtually unmatched standard in their seriousness and range. Sex, spirituality, religion, power – he has relentlessly examined the largest issues in human ... Read more in Amazon's Leonard Cohen Store

Visit Amazon's Leonard Cohen Store
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Frequently Bought Together

Old Ideas + Live In London + Popular Problems
Price for all three: $51.43

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  • Live In London $12.99
  • Popular Problems $11.88

Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 14, 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Imports
  • ASIN: B0070QSP5O
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (214 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #241,707 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
176 of 189 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of his best January 31, 2012
Format:Audio CD
This is a truly great Leonard Cohen album in my view - something I've not been able to say for too many years. The music often sounds delicate but has a laid back robustness about it, too, with his trademark simple melodies and a very welcome varied sound and style, with elements of country, blues, gospel and rock. There are also the beautiful and familiar female backing vocals, and some simply magnificent work from a varied band - the trumpet on "Amen," for example, is unexpected and absolutely spellbinding.

Cohen's voice these days has passed through the Whisky & Cigarettes stage and is well on the way to a Chronic Bronchitis sound, but he still has that fabulous depth and resonance beneath the weariness and the creaks. He hovers between singing and speaking for much of this album even more than previously, but as a friend once said to me, "No one can sing a Leonard Cohen song the way Cohen himself can't." How true. He is miked very close so, particularly when listening on headphones, it really feels as though he is present and whispering into your ear.

All this is perfect for the songs here, whose lyrics are Cohen at his best: thoughtful, allusive, melancholy, witty and sometimes provoking. The religious imagery he has always used so brilliantly is well in evidence, and it is striking how much of it is now specifically Christian. Broken relationships, suffering and death have always been in the corner of Cohen's eye whatever he is writing about. They are often in plain sight here and are treated with insight, resignation, compassion and beauty. The old witty twinkle and his self-deprecatory streak are still there, though, and shine through what is often a very elegiac atmosphere.
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31 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars between the opening and closing of a door February 2, 2012
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Carl Sandburg defined poetry as what is seen in that brief moment between the opening and closing of a door. I have listened to Leonard Cohen for much of my adult life and reveled in the mastery and consummate skills shown during the recent tour, especially Live in London. Frankly, I thought that was close to the end of the third act. I knew he cut part of the tour after he injured his back and thought that was the shadow descending. Thus, I was completely unprepared for this recording.

A friend told be to rush to hear it. He had listened to it while driving and had to stop by the side of the road: to think, to feel , to cry. I have just listened and simply cannot recall its equal. This is the essential man and the singular human. Everyone will hear the words through a different ear. It has the deepest sadness I have heard spoken to music in the modern era. " Crazy has places to hid in" and so does genius.

One review said all must be right with the world that a 77 year old man could give such a gift of brilliance. This is what words and music were meant to convey. We live close to Montreal and go to the neighborhood that Leonard lives in. I have always imagined seeing him walk down the street and , in some ways, wait for the waters to part. This is a very rare human being and this is a remarkable and touching reminder of what life can give us. If you have lived life at all, this collection of songs will change you.
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106 of 125 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars DEAR MUSIC APPRECIATORS January 31, 2012
Format:Audio CD
Dear Music Appreciators,

I come to this album as one who knows little about Leonard Cohen and his music. I've admired both the Jeff Buckley and Brandi Carlile covers of "Hallelujah," and I remember liking the Concrete Blonde cover of "Everybody Knows" when it appeared on the PUMP UP THE VOLUME soundtrack. I know Cohen is Canadian and that he is considered to be one of the greatest and most influential singer-songwriters of our time. Despite the countless times I've read his name when reading about music over the years, I just never got around to him. Some of you may consider this an unforgivable admission of musical ignorance, while other Cohen newbies like me can take solace in the knowledge that they are not alone.

And now I see Leonard Cohen, seventy-seven years old, sitting in a black suit, black hat, and black sunglasses on his enigmatic, black-shadowed album cover at the top of the Amazon sales charts and I can't help but think "it must be time for me to get around to Leonard Cohen..."

Hearing OLD IDEAS has taught me that popping my Cohen cherry so relatively late in my musical fandom is both a blessing and a curse. A blessing because apparently I have now just skimmed the surface of a true treasure trove that I can savor digging into deeply for the first time. A curse because these are treasures that could have been with me all along. I have been missing out until now but it is time to make up for lost time with Leonard.

I imagine true fans of the man will already know all about this album. They will already know that this is another great one and that it's worth the time they will put into it.
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93 of 112 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's Coming For Me Darling January 31, 2012
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This is from Banjo, one of the songs on LC's great new album, Old Ideas.

It's a broken banjo bobbing
On the dark infested sea

It's coming for me darling
No matter where I go

Its duty is to harm me
My duty is to know

What's going on here? What is the dark sea infested with? Why is the banjo broken, menacing? How come it's after the 77 year old songwriter, intent on harming the gracious and self deprecating old fellow?

We never learn. Perhaps this is a merciful thing...

Over the course of his lifetime Cohen's ever more gravelly baritone has at times been the voice of the prophet, the muse, the lecher, the lover, the poet, the madman and oftentimes, the priest. All are represented in Old Ideas, a remarkable new collection of songs by the master.

This is a starkly existential album. It traces a thin line along the edge of an abyss. But even as it does so, it holds out the hope of redemption and the promise of restoration - a coming out of the darkness and into the light.

Darkness is one song I just can't get out of my mind. It's a taut and sinister twelve bar that's at any moment ready to snap. The tension is unbelievable:

I caught the darkness
It was drinking from your cup
I caught the darkness
Drinking from your cup
I said, "Is this contagious?"
You said, "Just drink it up."

Meanwhile Leonard finger picks insistently, Neil Larsen weaves a haunting refrain on the Hammond B3, and when Sharon Robinson and the Webb Sisters kick in with a vocal of urgent and barely restrained desire it makes the hair stand up on the back of your neck.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Six stars.
Published 3 days ago by
5.0 out of 5 stars Great voice.
Great album. Love the low bass voice.
Published 19 days ago by Dr. Neil S. Kaye
5.0 out of 5 stars Top Notch Cohen
What's not to love? If you are a lover of Leonard Cohen's work, this is a must have.
Published 25 days ago by Solitary Dancer
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
what can I say? the man has blown me away for almost 50 years
Published 27 days ago by s.s
5.0 out of 5 stars Cohen Ponders the Inevitable
"Old Ideas" is an excellent album containing songs and sounds that are an extension of the sound on "Live in London," that I've been listening to almost incessantly since I bought... Read more
Published 28 days ago by GradyPhilpott
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Everything Cohen does is wonderful. This is no exception.
Published 1 month ago by Barbara Knott
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
great Cohen album
Published 1 month ago by Rubyjo
5.0 out of 5 stars Goodbye, Old Friend
I hate to say anything negative about Leonard Cohen because I love him so, but his precious golden voice is gone. The poetry is still wondrous though. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Dy
5.0 out of 5 stars Love Leonard
Always love Leonard Cohen.... My dream is to see him in concert before one of us dies..... Hoping....
Published 2 months ago by Robbin mason
5.0 out of 5 stars Leonard Cohen
Since my husband is a Leonard Cohen fan this was right up his alley. He made great songs and lives an interesting life.
Published 2 months ago by P. H. Chan
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