El Mundo
July 5, 2001

Leonard Cohen Returns to the Present with
Ten New Songs

Press Agency EFE

Contributed by Juan Luis Corcobado Cartes
Translated by Marie Mazur (using translation software)
and aided by Juan Luis Corcobado Cartes and others

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Photo by Chema Conesa
Photo by Chema Conesa
Singer Leonard Cohen has returned to compose and record and he is in Europe to promote his work, Ten New Songs, a title which reflects his isolation of seven years in a Zen monastery in Los Angeles, and which will be released this October.

Accompanied by Sharon Robinson, who co-authored the new songs, produced and accompanied Cohen on the vocals for the record, the singer in Madrid yesterday played for a group of journalists and sales directors, Ten New Songs, a record with songs like "Here It Is" and "In My Secret Life," that maintain the sound and the unmistakable tone of the Canadian.

To the question of when Cohen will tour Spain, he responded, "I do not know, perhaps next year."

With the patience of a monk, the singer, 66 years old and tired, after having been in Italy yesterday and leaving for Germany next, the European countries where his records have been most successful, posed for photos by journalists and answered questions from a great many distributors before playing a portion of his new album.

"I'll be marching through the morning, / Marching through the night, / Moving cross the borders / Of My Secret Life. / Looked through the paper. / Makes you want to cry. / Nobody cares if the people / Live or die. / And the dealer wants you thinking / That it's either black or white. / Thank G-d it's not that simple / In My Secret Life," Cohen sings in one of his songs, "In My Secret Life."

A drought of four years

After a drought of four years, Cohen released his penultimate work, The Future (1992), and since then the Canadian, author of poems and novels and the well-known song "Suzanne," has not recorded anything, although in February he released Field Commander Cohen: Tour of 1979, a collection of live performances.

During these years he also released More Best Of, a compilation of the greatest songs of a writer who has sold more than eleven million records.

Ten New Songs is a good example of a body of work, produced with much time and effort, but still offering the same familiar, unaffected compositions, whispered by Cohen's serious voice and tone and faithful to his style.

"As someone long prepared for this to happen, / Go firmly to the window. Drink it in. / Exquisite music. Alexandra laughing. / Your firm commitments tangible again. / And you who had the honor of her evening, / And by the honor had your own restored - / Say goodbye to Alexandra leaving; / Alexandra leaving with her lord." ("Alexandra Leaving")

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