Bob Dylan’s Albums In Order of Preference And Graded

Written by | October 31, 2018 14:56 pm | No Comments


I was going to write my Electrifying Aretha review today (hint: her “That Lucky Old Sun” matches Armstrong’s) but with the More Blood, More Tracks available on Friday I thought a quick(ish) jump through the catalog might be fun. Here are all the albums in order of preference, plus grades, also if I felt the urge I wrote a couple of words.

Highway 61 Revisited (1965) – A+

Blood On The Tracks (1975) – A+

Bob Dylan’s Greatest Hits, Vol II (1970) – A+ – I’m not cheating, the five new songs include “Watching The River Flow”

John Wesley Harding (1967) – A+

Bringing It All Back Home (1965) – A+

Another Side Of Bob Dylan (1964) – A+

Blonde On Blonde (1966) – A+ – I reviewed the entire studio recordings for rock nyc (The Cutting Edge Box Set)  and I still put it lower than so many people because of one reason: “Sad Eyed Lady Of The Lowlands”.

The Bootleg Series Volumes 1- 3 (Rare And Unreleased) 1961 – 1991 (1991)  – A+ – If you can ever get your hands on a boot called “The Real Bootlegs Series,” it is better than this.

Time Out Of Mind (1997) – A+

Triplicate (2015 – 2017) – A+

The Bootleg Series Vol. 12: The Cutting Edge 1965–1966 (2015) – A+

The Freewheeling Bob Dylan (1963) – A

The Times They Are A Changin’ (1964) – A

Shot Of Love (1981) – A

The Bootleg Series Vol. 8: Tell Tale Signs: Rare and Unreleased 1989–2006 (2008) – A

Before The Flood (1974) – A -The band have one side of the double

Slow Train Coming (1979) – A

The Bootleg Series Vol. 10: Another Self Portrait (1969–1971) – A

Love And Theft (2001) – A

Oh Mercy (1989) – A

The Bootleg Series Vol. 13: Trouble No More 1979–1981 (2018) – A

Planet Waves (1974) – A

Biograph (1985) – A

Good As I Been To You (1992) – A

World Gone Wrong (1994) – A

Modern Times (2006) – A – The last of the trilogy of resurrected Dylan masterpieces

The Bootleg Series Vol. 11: The Basement Tapes Complete (2014) – A

New Morning (1970) – A-

Nashville Skyline (1969) – A-

Empire Burlesque (1985) – A- Aurally fucked but if they had switched the “When The Night Comes Falling from The Sky” with the one with Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers it would’ve been an “A”

Self Portrait (1970) – A- This works in reverse from The Basement Tapes complete, now that we’ve heard Another Self-Portrait, this much maligned double sounds better.

The Bootleg Series Vol. 7: No Direction Home: The Soundtrack – A- -The Martin Scorsese docu was awesome as well

The Bootleg Series Vol 4 Bob Dylan Live 1966, The “Royal Albert Hall Concert (2000) – A-

The Bootleg Series Vol 5: Bob Dylan 1975, The Rolling Thunder Revue (2002) – A-

The Bootleg Series Vol. 6: Bob Dylan Live 1964, Concert at Philharmonic Hall (2004) – A-

Bob Dylan’s Greatest Hits Vol 1 (1967) – A-

The Basement Tapes (1975) – B+ – Now that we’ve heard The Basement Tapes Complete,  the original  sounds a little pre-determined

Knocked Out Loaded (1986) – B+ – Only two great songs (and one complete turkey), but one of the great songs last over ten minutes and was co-written with Sam Shepherd

The Bootleg Series Vol. 9: The Witmark Demos: 1962–1964 (2010) – B+

Live 1961 – 2000: Thirty-Nine Years Of Great Concert Performances (2001) – B+

Infidels (1983) – B+

Together Through Life (2009) – B+

In Concert – Brandeis University 1963 (2011) – B+

The 30th Anniversary Concert celebration (1993) – B+ – I’m not insane about it except for Lou Reed and George Harrison -both of them kill

Saved (1980) – B+

Down In The Groove (1988) – B+

Live at Carnegie Hall 1963 (2005) – B+

MTV Unplugged (1994) – B+

Bob Dylan  (1962) – B

Tempest (2012) – B – His last album of original material

Under the Red Sky (1990) – B

Desire (1970) – B – Blame Lester Bangs for this one not standing up, despite “Hurricane” and “Isis”

Hard Rain (1970) – B- – An album saved from ignobility by the Bootleg Series

Christmas in the Heart (2009) – B-

Masterpieces – B- Nobodies first choice for a Dylan Greatest hit – B-

Street Legal (1978) – B-

Bob Dylan’s Greatest Hits Volume 3 – B- – Not very useful except for a great new song called “Dignity”

The Best of Bob Dylan (2005) – B- – Finally, you can get “Things Have Changed” on a Dylan album.

Real Live (1984) – C+

Pat Garrett And Billy The Kid (1973) – C+ – “Knocking On Heaven’s Door” does not an album make

Blues (2006) – C+

The Best of Bob Dylan (1997) – C+ – Never released in the States.

The Best Of Bob Dylan, Vol 2 (2000) – C+ – Also never released in the States

The Essential Bob Dylan (2000) – C+ – Released in the States

Dylan (2007) – C+

Dylan (1970) – C+ – Sure, it is a major fuck over by Columbia but where else can you hear Dylan sing “big Yellow Taxi”?

Dylan & The Dead – C

Bob Dylan At Budokan – C

Live at The Gaslight 1962 (2005) – I’ve only heard “Motherless Child” -recorded at the same time but it didn’t make it on to this album, released through Starbucks, and I have never heard it.

The Original Mono Recordings (2010) – I haven’t heard it in this format but it is Dylan’s first seven albums

The 50th Anniversary Collection (2012) –  “-the first collection by Bob Dylan that Sony Music released to prevent the recordings from legally entering the public domain in Europe

Bob Dylan: The Complete Album Collection Vol. One (2013)

The 50th Anniversary Collection 1963 (2013)

The 50th Anniversary Collection 1964 (2014)



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