By Kyle Francis
Chimes of Freedom: The Songs of Bob Dylan Honoring 50 Years of Amnesty International is an album as diverse, unpredictable and triumphant as the man it pays tribute to.
At 76 tracks, Chimes of Freedom is a musical expedition spanning multiple genres and featuring a diverse group of artists. The lengthy roster includes industry heavyweights Queens of the Stone Age, Pete Townshend, Adele and Miley Cyrus.
However, many of the best moments on the album come from lesser-known artists like The Airborne Toxic Event, whose tender rendition of one of Dylan’s finest love songs, “Boots of Spanish Leather,” marks one of the album’s most enjoyable covers.
Many standout tracks come from artists who were around to experience Dylan in his prime. Betty Lavette delivers one of the best vocal performances on the album with her soulful rendition of “Most of the Time,” while Carly Simon turns “Just Like a Woman” into a jazzy piano ballad that hits all the right notes.
Other noteworthy renditions include Sinead O’Connor’s catchy rendition of Dylan’s born-again period track “Property of Jesus,” Canadian rapper K’naan’s reinterpretation of “With God on Our Side” and Blake Mills’s beautiful cover of “Heart of Mine.”
For an album with over five hours of music, Chimes of Freedom is surprisingly consistent. Besides a few low points, such as My Chemical Romance’s bastardization of the epic classic “Desolation Row,” it provides a great listening experience- whether you’re a Dylan fan or not.