• Record Label: Sony
  • Release Date: Aug 29, 2006

Universal acclaim - based on 29 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 28 out of 29
  2. Negative: 0 out of 29
  1. "Modern Times" offers further evidence that this man remains more than capable of greatness.
  2. The biggest disappointment here is that Modern Times is probably Dylan's least-surprising release in decades-- it's the logical continuation of its predecessor, created with the same band he's been touring with for years, fed from familiar influences, and sprinkled with all the droll, anachronistic bits now long-expected.
  3. Modern Times is a record of both giddy songwriting peaks and overall uniformity, a record whose music ultimately delivers and enriches its well-bred messages of realism and religion, work and devotion, the certitude of decay and the decay of certitude.
  4. Perversion packed with allusions -- forgotten titles, purloined and paraphrased sources, pilfered public records and archives. This is what steeps the songs in American history instead of planting them in psycho wards, clinics, and retirement homes.
  5. Modern Times may not contain a single song that would rank among Dylan's all-time best, but it doesn't have to.
  6. Now, more than at any time since his first few folk albums, he sounds like a traditionalist. He's walking down that same road that Sonny and Cisco and Leadbelly walked down.
  7. Might be the most upbeat feel-bad album of 2006.
  8. Here Dylan has written a great part and acts it out beautifully. And, as usual, everything is out in the open but nothing, absolutely nothing, is revealed.
  9. It's hard to hear Modern Times' music over the inevitable standing ovation and the thuds of middle-aged critics swooning in awe. When you do, you find something not unlike its predecessor, Love and Theft.
  10. Whereas Chaplin's sharply drawn social comment is rightly considered a modern classic, Dylan's Modern Times -- sung in a strangely affected croak you'd expect to hear from Leon Redbone's grandfather -- comes off like a feeble anachronism in which our man cynically attempts to pass off public-domain blues and folk tunes as his own by changing a few words.
  11. If Time Out of Mind is the weathered, death-obsessed uncle who drinks too much and broods over things unchangeable and distant, and Love and Theft is the rakish cad gleefully dancing on the edge of the apocalypse, then Times is Theft’s clean-shaven, less-interesting brother, with a bit of schooling under his belt and a professional spit-and-polish finish.
  12. Overlong as they are, these are beautifully recorded tracks: unadorned, antiquated, intimate.
  13. The entire construction is a thing of grace -- conservative, and new under the sun.
  14. Intriguing, immediate, and quietly epic, Modern Times must rank among Dylan's finest albums.
  15. The veteran singer-songwriter has opted to retreat into old-timey blues, rattling off clichés about blind horses and hog-eyed towns while laying down a halfhearted soundtrack of brushed drums, plucked guitars and woozy strings.
  16. It’s an intriguing and thoughtful and occasionally lively record, but it’s not the rollicking, randy good time some folks would lead you to believe.
  17. This enchanting album is rife with homespun reflections on philosophy, religion and the never-ending quest for true love.
  18. Some of the songs are two minutes too long and the album is sometimes so breezy it nearly dissolves, but Dylan’s lyrics are in top form and his band is impeccable.
  19. This swinging, sometimes mournful, often tender set of 10 songs proves an easy album to, well, love. [25 Aug 2006]
  20. The slow-building atmospherics of Dylan's 1997 comeback album have given way to some of the most immediately accessible tunes in his catalog.
  21. Under The Radar
    One of 2006’s great works. [#15]
  22. New Musical Express (NME)
    Dylan's voice is the star. [26 Aug 2006, p.43]
  23. Uncut
    Love And Theft was quite unlike any other pop album--apart, that is, from Modern Times, its direct and audacious sequel. [Sep 2006, p.72]
  24. Rolling Stone
    His third straight masterwork. [7 Sep 2006, p.99]
  25. Blender
    It radiates the observant calm of old masters who have seen enough life to be ready for anything--Yeats, Matisse, Sonny Rollins. [Sep 2006, p.139]
  26. Paste Magazine
    What makes the music so compelling is not its frame of reference... but the flair and originality with which it's put across. [Sep 2006, p.70]
  27. Mojo
    Crudely put, it is the sequel to Love And Theft, which is to say that a great deal of it is split between 12-bar treatises about love and lust and croonsome ballads about much the same themes.... That said, it is not quite as sharply focused as that record. [Oct 2006, p.94]
  28. Q Magazine
    While he has never sounded quite so full of empathy, this is a grumpy old record. [Oct 2006, p.114]
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 274 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 21 out of 274
  1. dave
    Dec 26, 2006
    Dylan has some amazing albums and for critics to give this anything close to a 10 it degrades his truly remarkabe work
  2. Nov 28, 2017
    The song "Spirit on the Water" says everything about what this album is - "You think I'm over the hill, You think I'm past my prime, Let meThe song "Spirit on the Water" says everything about what this album is - "You think I'm over the hill, You think I'm past my prime, Let me see what you got..." Dylan emphatically proves he's still got plenty in the locker here. Following on strongly from "Love and Theft", this is up there with the master songwriters best work from the last 30 years. 10 tracks of the highest calibre and country blues at it's best. His vocals are surprisingly good as an extra bonus on this and the backing band he has here play a stormer as well. For me, this is the last great album Dylan has produced and the last essential one. Full Review »
  3. Nov 10, 2015