Somewhat strange that what was once going to record stores before opening on Tuesday, then turned into scouring for a ‘leak’, has now gone back to a predictable cycle of refreshing NPR the sunday night a week before a great album is released.
The new Best Coast album is pretty good but I really wish I could watch them play it with 10 other freaked out people in the Beverly Center Bloomingdales like I saw them two years ago. Still one of the most surreal shows ever.
If someone asked me today what my religious affiliation was I would answer “Springsteen”. Born in the U.S.A. came out the year I was born and at some point the tape was introduced to my red Sony Walkman and Raffi was summarily told to get lost. The A-side of the tape wore out I believe because I kept rewinding it to hear the title track over and over. A choice that lacks nuance and sophistication but I was only 3 or so, obviously today my favorite song on the album is ‘I’m Going Down’ by a mile.
The purpose of a Springsteen tour in 2012 is more closely aligned with why a new band goes on tour than why other more nostalgic acts of his era go on tour. Clearly this attitude has caused what some would call some missteps and certainly some questionable styles and attempts at relevancy in his current era. Looking back at a picture of Bruce from the 80s or 90s creates the same laughter and cringing that looking back at anyone’s photos from that era. He is a man of searching and of the people and that honesty creates mistakes.
Those mistakes and that honesty are what makes a new album a cultural event and a tour another attempt to dig deep and search for something only a large gathering of people can create. Going to see Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band is to understand that together something special just might happen.
Springsteen best encapsulates not only my vision of America but also my attitude towards life, challenge, despair and joy. This song will probably be set to end of season montages for sports teams and college graduation classes for years to come. Most artists usually achieve a song with universal emotion like that by forcing themselves outside their norm (i.e. Green Day’s ‘Good Riddance’) but ‘Wrecking Ball’ is merely Bruce performing the simple exercise of writing about what it has meant to play his songs to massive crowds in his hometown. The idea is simple but the execution is extraordinary.
The Ticketmaster free version of Watch the Throne does not list Kanye as an artist after itunes import. I imagine he’d be totally okay with that and not see it as a big deal at all. I can imagine him saying “No big deal, it’s just an id3 tag maaaaan.”