In the end, struggling to Bruce Springsteen a labor victory.
And oh how good it sometimes is along the way.
“The River” was released October 10, 1980 was Springsteen an established rock performer with four plates behind. The last two had sold quite well. But above all, he was known for his live shows. With the river in the back, he made a long world tour and played including Stockholm (Ice Stadium as it was then called) on 7 and 8 May 1981. In particular, the second concert is classical and Springsteen invited it, in addition to many songs from “The River” “Darkness on the Edge of Town” and “Born to Run”, a series of cover songs ((Credence / John Fogerty, Woody Guthrie and Elvis). And not least amazing little stories and reflections as an introduction to some of the songs.
Now it’s time again. A box set of recordings from “The River” has been released and Springsteen makes a tour of the USA (which today extended by another 14 gigs and goes on until the end of April). And in May it is time for Europe.
Tonight is the third gig of the tour. New York City. Madison Square Garden.
The snow that closed New York the other day (and stopped the first gig) almost melted away. It is spring in the air. And MSG is hot.
Ten of eight New York City time they step onto the stage. Not quite as resilient as then, 35 years ago. But without walking frames. So far.
And the cheers of the audience can not be mistaken. Pure love.
-Did you survive the snow? asks Bruce apropos snowstorm.
And they begin with “The River” outtaken “Meet Me In The City”.
Entire MSG stands up right away.
Sing despite being “a new song”. The atmosphere on top!
The fact that the song did not come on the disc itself is a mystery.
Then it’s time for “The River.” All the songs in sequence. “The River” is about wanting to be a part of something, find a connection, form a family, says Bruce.
The first quarter is brilliantly with “The Ties That Bind,” “Jackson Cage” and ” Independence Day, “which tops. The audience is in the sky and sings along, dancing and listening. As when he before the “Independence Day” talking about how hard it is to young to understand that parents only people who also want to get something out of life, and sometimes may feel that they missed the chance:
-Put Sit down at the kitchen table and talk to each other.
The man still sings brilliant. What is the right incomprehensible considering how strained his voice for three hours in as many nights for so many years.
Second quarter is considerably rougher, but “Out in the Streets” create new allsångs- and dance ecstasy of NY audience. “The River” mislaid, despite Bruce’s sister who is in MSG get the song dedicated to him. Little Steven plays error in the beginning and then it does not address the real.
It is best -Lite unexpectedly – “I wanna marry you” – in a delicious Tex-Mex version with long intro. “I wrote this song as a daydream. To find that beautiful girl you fall in love forever.”
Part three begins with Point Blank. Long piano intro by Roy Bittan.
One of the most beautiful songs. Unrequited love. Little Steven plays great guitar licks. He is the very evening both guitar and vocally. “Cadillac Ranch” is as usual, but “Fade away” lifts Live
“Stolen Car” Bruce picks up his best soul voice and begins alone with the guitar. Then Roy Bittans piano. Gradually fill the others on. Another song that will be stronger live.
The crowd at Madison Square Garden has drunk some beer now and some have managed to sneak smoke some jazz tobacco. So it is right a lot of talk on the quiet songs.
The last three songs from “The River” is magical. “The price you pay ‘. Maffigt. Delightful runs the chorus when the whole gang squeeze in. Three acoustic guitars and Bruce played the twelve string electric guitar.
“Drive All Night” is one of the best in “The River.” And Bruce sings like that good again. But the audience longs party. Too bad.
It sounds crazy good.
In the end, it’s still a work victory. You can not resist this.
Jake Clemons makes long solo that grows and grows.
“Wreck on the highway.” Another rarely played gem. And it may be a completely different force live.
“And that was The River,” said Bruce. “But we will continue for a while longer.”
And they do. In just over an hour. A total of three hours and ten minutes. Not bad for a bunch of 60-plussare. But after all, it is more of a stairwell with a focus on dance and party. Nothing wrong with that.
And, incredible to hear 16,000 New Yorkers-singing all the lyrics to “Thunder Road” with Bruce.
“It’s a town full of losers and we ‘ re pulling out of here to win “.