MSN Music Blog - Reverb

Old Ideas, New Leonard

Cohen's First New Album Since 2004 Looks Backward

By percy thrillington Nov 25, 2011 5:29PM

It has been a very impressive few years of resurgence for Leonard Cohen, including a triumphant world tour, the celebrated poetry volume Book of Longing, the prestigious Spanish Prince of Asturias literary award, and approximately 375,000 covers of "Hallelujah." Now comes the reward the faithful have been waiting for: Old Ideas, a brand new album of new material, his first since 2004's Dear Heather. The first song from the record, "Show Me the Place," went online this week, and the organic sounds—to say nothing of the lyrics, including "Show me the place, help me roll away the stone/ Show me the place, I can’t move this thing alone/ Show me the place where the word became a man/ Show me the place where the suffering began"—hark back to the themes and the palette of his early work, with organic instruments (piano, strings, choir) replacing the synthesizers that have dominated his work since 1988's I'm Your Man. No telling if the rest of the album will follow suit, but regardless, it's an exciting development.

Old Ideas will be released in late January.