Leonard Cohen is about to turn 80 but shows no sign of slowing down. The iconic singer-songwriter will release a new album next month. Cohen, whose songs include "Marianne", "The Sisters of Mercy", and the revered and much-covered "Hallelujah", has written nine new songs for the provocatively-titled Popular Problems. The album will be released on September 23rd, two days after his birthday. Fans who pre-order will receive an instant download of the first single off the album, "Almost Like the Blues". This is the second album that Cohen has released since going back on the road in 2008. For more than ten years prior to that, he'd been living in retirement and quiet solitude as a Buddhist on Mount Baldy. But when it came to light that his manager had stolen millions from him, Cohen was forced back into the spotlight to make money. Since then, he has astonished audiences all over the world with his three-and-a-half hour concerts. "I was able to restore my tiny fortune within a year or so, but I kept on touring," he told Rolling Stone in 2012. "Touring is like taking the first step on a walk to China. It's a serious commitment."
"Yet again, Leonard Cohen has broken musical boundaries with new creative inspiration," Rob Stringer, Chairman/CEO of Columbia Records said in a statement. "These nine new songs are simply sublime and innovative with a unique spirit. We're absolutely thrilled and honored to celebrate this milestone with him." Cohen's voice sounds as gravelly and authoritative as ever, and he seems to have lost none of his somber humor or dark view of humanity, if the lyrics of his new song are anything to go by. "I saw some people starving/There was murder, there was rape/Their villages were burning/They were trying to escape/I couldn't meet their glances/I was staring at my shoes/It was acid/It was tragic/It was almost like the blues."
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