004 | “Cold Irons Bound”
It’s appropriate we’re recording in my new studio in NW – reading Michael Gray, it’s like a beautiful, if terrifying array of lights and sounds outside, but our voices sound like we’re in an airplane hanger, and we’re on the floor, and I have the least essential furniture ever.
Rudyard Kipling’s poem “Cold Iron” (1910) may have been the inspiration for the title.
- Here, note the words “some” and “all”. Dylan isn’t just saying that he thought some people were his friends but in the end they weren’t, he’s saying that he was wrong about both who was and who was NOT his friends.
- Or, think about this is how a man creates a hell for himself, then trying to escape, well there is no escape without cold irons bound when he has to return to his failure.
- I love that online people are talking about the interesting nature of this song:
- “mathematical music” from Chronicles – the idea this can spin out at any minute is awesome
- The chords are unusual for Dylan too. The song is in B flat, with the band playing the chord of B flat major and Dylan often using the notes of B flat minor in the vocal. The chorus line changes, and for once I am flummoxed. Maybe my ears are decline (well, yes I know they are) and maybe I am just getting old, but those last three chords I can only express as D flat major, E flat ?????, B flat major.
- I turned to Dylanchords.info – usually helpful in such matters, but there the song is transposed to another key, and quite honestly I can’t make their version of the chorus chords work at all when I play the piano along with the piece. Eyolf Østrem on the site admits though his chords are “only a faint approximation to the wealth of notes sounding at this point (and never twice the same, it seems)”.