Songs from a Room is the second album by Canadian musician Leonard Cohen, released in 1969. It reached No. 63 on the US Billboard Top LPs and No. 2 on the UK charts. In 2007, Songs from a Room was given a remastered reissue by Sony/BMG as part of a revamping of Cohen's back catalog. The new edition includes two bonus tracks, early versions of "Bird on a Wire" and "You Know Who I Am," which were produced by David Crosby. While he might seem an unlikely studio partner for Cohen, the results are better suited to Cohen's talents than what Johnston brought to the songs, and one wonders how the album might have turned out with Crosby at the controls. The reissue has been given a handsome book-style package with plenty of archival photos, song lyrics and new liner notes from Anthony DeCurtis.
Leonard Cohen's first album was an unqualified triumph which announced the arrival of a bold and singular talent, and many who heard it must have wondered what Cohen could do for an encore…
Given that Leonard Cohen's recent international concert tour was prompted by the fact his former manager purportedly made off with his life's savings, only a curmudgeon would blame the man for trying to make the enterprise as profitable as possible. Roughly 14 months after releasing Live in London, which preserved Cohen's July 2008 performance at London's 02 Arena, the venerable singer and songwriter is presenting to his fans Songs from the Road, featuring 12 tunes (on both CD and DVD) from his 2008 and 2009 concert dates.
…Songs from the Road offers the chance to see one of the most enigmatic and lyrically brilliant artists working in the realm of popular music. Cohen has been such a reclusive figure for so long it's a bit bracing to see him, warts and all, in this amazing amalgamation of performances from venues near and far. Though the image quality here isn't great, the audio quality more than makes up for it, and this Blu-ray is highly recommended.
…Songs from the Road seems a bit pale compared to the excellence of Live in London, but both albums are enough to convince anyone that even at the age of 74, Leonard Cohen remains one of the most vital figures in contemporary music, and his gifts as a performer nearly match his abilities as a writer, no small accomplishment.