Early reviews are pouring in for Bob Dylan's new Christmas album and the verdict is anything but unanimous.
Customer reviews of "Christmas in the Heart" on the iTunes Music Store are averaging 3.5 stars, but the vast majority of the reviews are in the extreme. It's either a five-star stroke of genius, or a one-star abomination.
Hear "Must Be Santa" and give us your review at News Cut.
"Bob Dylan stands for a generation, now for a holiday," writes An M. Gardam. Five stars.
"Christmas has indeed come early!" exclaims Blitzen, Dasher and Prancer. "O come all ye Dylan faithful and partake in what may be the master's most important album since Blood on the Tracks. If you've been nice this year, this gem may just show up in your stocking." Five Stars.
"Ah, what were they thinking?" asks Gray Matter, Inc. "This is bad. Really, really bad and I pretty much love any holiday song." One Star.
Forces of Gravity is "Speechless" -- "Never thought that I['d] live to hear Bob doing a Christmas album! It is certainly not what I thought it would be... but it is still strangely interesting and exciting." Five Stars.
Vesuvio Cat agrees. "This is more than just a Christmas album... It is very sincere, very poignant, and will absolutely go down as one of his biggest successes and yes, biggest surprises." Five stars. Why Bob? writes: "There is no God -- I'm killing myself. NOW." One Star.
The album gave RC6699 bloody thoughts as well. "This would make any kid or adult scream in pain... I'm saving it for Halloween." One Star.
But in the eyes of some fans, Dylan can simply do no wrong. "I'd be happy listening to him sing the dictionary," says Joe from California. Five Stars.
"It's Bob," agrees Stumbles Four Twenty, "Got to love it!" Five Stars.
Dylan, then called Bobby Zimmerman, grew up Jewish on Minnesota's Iron Range. In the late 1970's he openly embraced Christianity in his life and music. But this is his first full-fledged Christmas album. Perhaps it will also be his last.