96kHz/24-bit, FLAC; Verve Records B0028016-02 (supplied by www.highresaudio.com)
Any reviewer could be forgiven for thinking ‘Oh gawd, not another album of Bob Dylan covers’, but from the opening licks of Bettye Lavette’s Things Have Changed it’s clear this is something very different indeed. Produced by Steve Jordan, who also drums, it features former Dylan guitarist Larry Campbell, Leon Pedarvis on keyboards and the ever-reliable bassist Pino Palladino. This is a band that sounds tight, driving and full of soul, perfectly setting off Lavette’s vocal range. She snarls, she cajoles and she belts, delivering Dylan’s lyrics with full meaning and force, getting to the heart of classics including ‘It Ain’t Me Babe’ while making ‘The Times They Are A-Changin’’ sound scorchingly fresh. Even the less-known tracks here are illuminated by the recording, band and voice, meaning this isn’t just another Dylan covers album – it’s in a class of its own. AE
Sound Quality: 80%
Hi-Fi News Lab Report
The subtler intros to tracks 3, 6 and 7 deliver the best sound, for when ‘Betty Jo’ winds up her pipes and is joined by guitar and – especially – keyboards, the recording is a little too hot. Much of the ultrasonics is noise/distortion. PM
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