In our upcoming Bob Dylan collection, we are featuring excerpts from historical reviews of all of the studio albums, from 1962 to the (almost) present. Many are insightful. Most are interesting (particularly in hindsight). Some are funny. Some are prescient. And some are, well…. just plain wrong. Here is a fun one:
Bob Dylan’s latest American chart entry is the world’s longest single—a six-minute epic entitled ‘Like A Rolling
Stone’. In Britain, CBS have no plans to release any Dylan single in the immediate future. And when a single is
released, it is by no means certain to be ‘Like A Rolling Stone’…. For once I’m on the side of a record company.
Frankly I can’t see ‘Like A Rolling Stone” pleasing either faction of Dylan’s fans—the folk collection or the pop
pickers. Dylan is saddled with a quite horrific backing dominated by syrupy strings, amplified guitar and organ….
The lyric has its moments of typical Dylan imagery, but the monotonous melody and Dylan’s expressionless intoning
just cannot hold the interest for what seems like the six longest minutes since the invention of time…..
Melody Maker (7 August 1965)