Cold Irons Bound

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"Cold Irons Bound"
Song by Bob Dylan from the album Time Out of Mind
Released September 30, 1997
Recorded January 1997
Genre Blues rock
Length 7:15
Label Columbia
Writer(s) Bob Dylan
Producer(s) Daniel Lanois
Time Out of Mind track listing
Music sample

"Cold Irons Bound" is a Grammy Award-winning song written by Bob Dylan, recorded in January 1997 and released on September 30, 1997 on his critically acclaimed album Time Out of Mind.

An alternate version of the song, recorded in July 2002 for a concert sequence in the film Masked and Anonymous, was released on the film's soundtrack album in July 2003. This version appears in video form on the bonus DVD included in the Limited Edition version of Dylan's 2006 album Modern Times.

Since its composition, "Cold Irons Bound" has been a regular in Dylan's live setlists. A concert version, recorded in Los Angeles on December 16, 1997, appeared on various "Love Sick" single releases in 1998, as well as on the compilation Live 1961-2000: Thirty-Nine Years of Great Concert Performances, released in Japan in 2001. A June 11, 2004 performance, from the Bonnaroo Music Festival, in Manchester, Tennessee, is included on the Deluxe Edition of Tell Tale Signs: Rare and Unreleased 1989–2006 (2008).

Dylan performing "Cold Irons Bound" in the film Masked and Anonymous

Oliver Trager describes "Cold Irons Bound" as "biting" with "ricocheting guitar licks, rockabilly drums, distorted organ, and [a] voice floating in a blimp of its own echo," in which "one can still hear, to paraphrase "Visions of Johanna," the ghost of electricity howling from the bones of Dylan's face..." [1] Michael Gray also describes this song in detail:

"There's an interesting tension, too, in "Cold Irons Bound," perhaps more accurately an interesting inappropriateness between, on one side, the grinding electronic blizzard of the music and the cold, aircraft-hangar echo of the voice lamenting its sojourn across a lethal planet - fields turned brown, sky lowering with clouds of blood, winds that can tear you to shreds, mists like quicksand - and on the other side the recurrently stated pursuit of tenderness, in phrases that seem imported from another consciousness...It's decidedly odd to hear, pitched against the scraping Lanois winds half tearing us to shreds, sentiments as obdurately "romantic" as

I found my own, found my one in you
Lookin' at you and I'm on my bended knee
I tried to love and protect you
and to hear such a defensively bleak, exhausted old voice articulate the thought that
I'm gonna remember forever the joy we've shared. [2]"



"Cold Irons Bound" has been covered by:


  1. ^ Trager, Oliver. Keys to the Rain: The Definitive Bob Dylan Encyclopedia, page 110. Billboard Books, 2004
  2. ^ Gray, Michael. Song & Dance Man III: The Art of Bob Dylan, page 750. Continuum, 2000

External links[edit]