leonard cohen's debut album from 1968 encapsulated the performer's artistry. a successful poet and novelist, he came to music through the folk idiom, and this set combines the aural simplicity and visual clarity of these two passions. cohen's lugubrious voice brought an intensity to a haunting collection bound together by beautiful melodies and deeply personal lyrics. members of contemporary group kaleidoscope join producer john simon in creating a delicate backdrop for some memorable love songs. Cohen's ability to be both intimate and universal is a rare gift and results in a body of work that is both timeless and enthralling, albeit a bit sombre.
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