Iron & Wine & Calexico – Dark Eyes – 12.5.11

Iron & Wine & Calexico
“Dark Eyes”

“Oh, the French girl, she’s in paradise and a drunken man is at the wheel, 
Hunger pays a heavy price to the falling gods of speed and steel.
Oh, time is short and the days are sweet and passion rules the arrow that flies,
A million faces at my feet but all I see are dark eyes.”

Todd Haynes 2007 film I’m Not There featured several different actors portraying Bob Dylan. The soundtrack, like the film, is a variety of artists covering Dylan songs in their own unique style. Most of the album is very hit or miss but Iron & Wine & Calexico’s version of “Dark Eyes” is by far my favorite song from it. I had never been the biggest fan of Iron & Wine before this song but after I heard it I went back and re-listened to several of their old tracks realizing I was in the wrong about them all these years.

I think there is some sort of law out there that says individuals are not allowed to like other bands covers of songs by artists like The Beatles or Bob Dylan better than the originals. I know many college sorority girls who broke this law after Across The Universe came out and I’m going to have to break it now. It’s not so much that I think Iron & Wine & Celexico sang the song better or anything like that, although I never really enjoyed the original,  it’s more that they took it and made it their own. It’s like if someone asks me who sings the song “Hurt” I’m going to tell them Johnny Cash instead of NIN. So if someone asks me who sings “Dark Eyes” I’m going to tell them Iron & Wine & Calexico instead of Bob Dylan. I guess Dylan will just have to live with only having all those other amazing songs as his own.

– Alex

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