Ranking All 39 Bob Dylan Studio Albums- #12: Oh Mercy. Bob Dylan’s 26th studio album. Released on September 28, 1989. 5 stars.
The countdown so far 39- Dylan -1973 38- Down In The Groove -1988 37-Knocked Out Loaded- 1986 36-Christmas In The Heart- 2009 35-Under A Red Sky- 1990 34-Saved- 1980 33-Fallen Angels 2016 32- Good As I Been To You- 1992 31- World Gone Wrong 1993 30- Triplicate 2017. 29- Shadows In The Night. 2015 28- Self Portrait 1970- 27- Bob Dylan- Bob Dylan 1962, 26- Empire Burlesque 1985, 25- Street Legal 1978, 24- Nashville Skyline 1969 23- Pat Garrett and Billy The Kid 1973- 22- Shot Of Love 1981 21. New Morning- 1970 20. Rough And Rowdy Ways -2020, #19- Tempest 2012 18. Together Through Life 2009 #17- Another Side Of Bob Dylan 1964 #16 -Infidels 1983 #15- Planet Waves 1974, #14- The Basement Tapes 1975 #13- “Modern Times 2006 and now #12 Oh Mercy 1989.
Bob Dylan from the 1983’s Infidels until 1997’s Time Out Of Mind-released seven albums- this is by far the highest rated one of those albums. Dylan was in a songwriting slump during that period- and after two of his worst albums -Knocked Out Loaded and Down In The Groove- I was starting to wonder… but when Oh Mercy came out of course I went right out and bought it and was pleasantly surprised. Bob was back at least for the moment.
The production of Daniel Lanios received a lot of credit for the sound on this album-but the key to it being a great album I think is as with every great Dylan album- the songs he wrote-and all ten songs were written by Dylan. Out of the ten songs on the album- they are all winners. Actually a couple songs Dylan wrote that didn’t make the cut for the album- would have been two of the stronger songs on this album- which is saying something “Series Of Dreams” and “Dignity.” To pick four songs from the album I’ll go with “Everything Is Broken”, “Ring Them Bells”, “Most Of The Time” and “Shooting Star”- but once again all ten songs are worth listening to. Oh Mercy- best Dylan album of the 1980’s.