Breaking more new ground, this has an electric side with a rock ‘n’ roll band, and an acoustic side. If anything he’d done in his life to date was controversial, this topped it. Folk purists were up in arms when Dylan went electric.
At once, he distanced himself from folk and protest, yet Subterranean Homesick Blues is still anti-establishment. Tim Riley of the US National Public Radio said: "snagged by a sour, pinched guitar riff, the song has an acerbic tinge". Maggie’s Farm could be about slavery, and/or the protest movement.
She Belongs to Me, Love Minus Zero/No Limit, Outlaw Blues, On the Road Again and It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue speak of love’s paradoxes and bohemian lifestyles. Bob Dylan’s 115th Dream is surreal electric blues; Gates Of Eden is about lost innocence, and Mr Tambourine Man, about a giant Turkish tambourine (or a drug dealer, depending on interpretation), is acoustic psychedelia. It’s Alright Ma (I’m Only Bleeding) is arguably, back to politics.
Listen (and watch): the famous card sequence of Subterranean Homesick Blues