When Leonard Cohen gave the concerts in England from which this album is culled, he had moved his early, dry folk style to supercontinental address. Here was a North American singer-songwriter diving headlong into the squirrelly intersections of pop and dramatic music, exploring the vagaries of a topic that, for Cohen, was a poetic cosmos unto itself: romance. This recording demonstrates how adeptly he recast that world. His six-man band, Passenger, not only follows but drives and animates his songs. Listen to the title track, in which Passenger easily negotiate the changes: from a march into the graceful slide of a ballad, then into a cheesy, skittery pop tune. Cohen also performs with a backup singer, Jennifer Warnes, who in “The Smokey Life” and “The Gypsy’s Wife” represents another sensuous and intelligent reason why Field Commander Cohen is so elaborately, and yet simply, awesome.