Thursday, September 13, 2007

More Leonard Cohen Blogging

The problem isn't that Cohen shouldn't be allowed to *sing* his own songs. He has a great baritone croon. The problem is that he shouldn't be allowed any input into how they are orchestrated. The version I linked to does feature addition verses, which hit harder on the sacred/profane/prayer/sex theme than the verses in the popular covers.

The Jeff Buckley version is one of the most popular. It has some fucking incredible guitar work, which makes for a better arrangement than the piano arpeggios that seem to be standards for covers Hallelujah. This is actually my first experience listening to Buckley, despite reading about him constantly.

Buckley has a verse not in Shrek: "Remember when I moved in you/and the holy ghost was moving too/ and with every breath we drew was hallelujah" I swear Cohen has a way of making his own horndogginess into something transcendent. I wish my horndogginess were so transcendent.

The standard arpeggio covers are here (Rufus Wainwright) and here (Alison Crowe, which I only clicked on because I thought it said Alison Krause)

Its a close contest between Buckley and Cale.


Anonymous said...

Allison Crowe's interpretation moves me most. Especially her album version. Of the male versions, I'll go for John Cale whose arrangement has been copied so often he deserves credit.

Mona Buonanotte said...

Buckley's version leaves me weepy. I think because he makes this little, almost imperceptible, sigh right before he starts singing.

Rob Helpy-Chalk said...

Hey Mona, glad to see you again!