Toronto Sun,
October 7, 2001

Silent One Cohen Has a Lot to Say

by Jane Stevenson

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After living on SoCal's Mt. Baldy for nearly five years, where he became a Zen monk, Canada's legendary poet-songwriter-novelist finally came down from the mountain, ready to write and record again.

In stores Tuesday, Cohen's first album since 1992's The Future finds him hooking up with former backup singer-multi-instrumentalist Sharon Robinson and producer Leanne Ungar for one of his more linear, if still intoxicating, musical efforts.

Starting with the opener In My Secret Life, which begins with Robinson's backup vocals before Cohen's gravelly voice kicks in, there is the sense of this being a cohesive album with a distinct fatalist theme as opposed to disparate spoken word pieces.

Lyrically, the standout is the lovely lament A Thousand Kisses Deep, as Cohen sings: "I'm turning tricks, I'm getting fixed, I'm back on boogie street/You lose your grip, and then you slip into the Masterpiece."

While hardly that, Ten New Songs clearly indicates that the Silent One (as his new Dharma name, Jikan, translates) will be silent no longer. He might even tour.

Other highlights include the country music wisdom of That Don't Make It Junk, the sexy and slow Here It Is and By The Rivers Dark, and the gospel-like Boogie Street.

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