Following the critical and commercial drubbing that SELF PORTRAIT received, Dylan returned to form with NEW MORNING. With its sepia-colored cover photo of a somewhat rabbinical-looking Dylan, this is a gentle, eclectic album in which the artist celebrates married life and living in the country. He sings about domestic bliss on "The Man in Me" and of the simple joy of being called 'pa' by his kids on "Sign in the Window." This was perhaps the last time that Dylan would release a collection of songs so free of his trademark bile. "If Not For You," for example, is gently, poetically romantic.
Much of the music bears some of the pastoral flavor of NASHVILLE SKYLINE. However the title track and the slide guitar-driven "One More Weekend" really rock. Elsewhere there are moments of quiet beauty: the eloquent "Time Passes Slowly" and the lilting, waltz-time "Winterlude." Dylan can even be heard enjoying himself in "If Dogs Run Free," which finds him uttering comical Beat-style jazz rhymes over scat singing. NEW MORNING ends with "Father of Night," a straightforward benediction that foreshadows some the religious themes that would follow later in the decade.
Rolling Stone (11/26/70, p.32) - "...this is an album that, the less said about it, the better....In good conscience, all I can really say is get it yourself and prepare to boogie..."