Leonard Cohen

Bird On A Wire

Bird On A Wire, Leonard Cohen's topsy-turvy tour of Europe and Israel circa 1972 captured by the cinematic lens of legendary British director Tony Palmer, is finally available for the first time on DVD.

The disc comprises 21 musical and poetry performances, including such Cohen gems as "Avalanche," "Suzanne," "Sisters Of Mercy," "Story Of Isaac," "Famous Blue Raincoat" and, of course, the classic "Bird On A Wire." The film and the songs all find the wild magic of Leonard Cohen in master form.

This is Leonard the ringleader, Leonard the peacemaker, Leonard the seducer. From Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and Dublin and on through Europe, Bird On A Wire shines light upon the dark troubadour of lust, longing, art and God.

An impressionistic travelogue of an artist on the lam in his roaming outpost of song, we find exquisite footage of Cohen on stage and by the sea. A solitary Cohen reads soul hymns and confessions in dark hotel rooms. In one scene, he is communing with band members; in others, he parades at pre-show soirees and after-show fever dreams.

Bird On A Wire is a masterful time capsule, whose mood and imagery reveal the intricate complexity of a chanson singing Jewish cantor offering his heart and soul to his faithful flock of ardent followers. And he’s still doing it today.

~ Lanny Cordola

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