Village Voice 04.19.2017 : Page 30

30 April 19 April 25, 2017 THIS WEEK IN AR T , B OOK S , D ANCE , FILM , MUSIC , THEA TER & T V VILLAGE Bob Dylan’s Book of Love Thirty standards that map a world sweeter than we will ever know B BY GREIL MARCUS ILLUSTRATION BY NICOLE RIFKIN ob Dylan walks through the land-scape of love. This three-disc set is his third (or third, fourth, and ifth) consecutive album of stan-dards mostly associated with Frank Sina-tra, but Triplicate doesn’t have the curated feel of Shadows in the Night , from 2015, or Fallen Angels , from last year — by compari-son they seem hesitant, partial, chapters in a book that doesn’t need to be inished. This is the book, and it does feel in-ished. When you reach the end of its thirty songs, from the 1929 “I Guess I’ll Have to Change My Plan” — recorded by Fred Astaire, then by Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Ju-lie London — to “Why Was I Born?” from the same year — recorded by Billie Holi-day in 1937 and Sinatra in 1947 — there’s the feeling of having been somewhere, of having been there : the country made by these songs. “Stormy Weather.” “It’s Funny to Everyone But Me.” “As Time Goes By.” “The Best Is Yet to Come.” “It Gets Lonely Early.” “When the World Was Young.” “I Could Have Told You.” “Once Upon a Time.” “It makes me so sad,” said a friend, hearing the album for the irst time. “It makes me think of all the people who are gone who loved these songs, every one of them.” That isn’t a feeling the album insists on or even calls for. It’s not elegiac, regretful, rueful, nostalgic, a gaze into the past where, as “Once Upon a Time” goes, “the world was sweeter than we knew.” That might read as an elegiac, regretful, rueful, nostal-gic look over the shoulder — we didn’t know those were the best days of our lives, we didn’t know that they would never come again. As those words come out of the song here, they don’t have to mean any-thing, but if they do, they might communi-cate something much harder: that the

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