Sunday, 11 March 2012

Review: Bruce Springsteen - Wrecking Ball

 You'll have your own thoughts on the iconic music of Bruce Springsteen. You may find it to be overrated and overplayed, and that many people enjoy it only to look reputable as the guy's already an affirmed rock icon. icon or not, I've always found his music to be delightful experience. Something that's wonderful about it is that while it started off very rough and menacing, as Springsteen has aged gracefully, the music's aged with him in a similar graceful manner which obtains the spirit of roughness and grit of his older performances. And this still present on seventeenth studio outing Wrecking Ball.

 Basically, The Boss' ability to craft a rousing song that just makes you want to clap your hands and sing along like a drunken fool is stellar and swinging blue collar folk punk songs like We Take Care of Our Own and Death To My Hometown are guaranteed to raise your spirits in their subtly anthemic nature. The album's title track is especially brilliant for this, which is probably the most beautifully crafted song on the album which was written in 2009 as a tribute to the Giants Stadium of Springsteen's homeland New Jersey which was demolished the following year and as Springsteen belts out "Come on and take your best shot, let me see what you got/ Bring on your wrecking ball" you can feel the spirit of collected strength and devotion and love for this traditional stadium.
 Even when getting everyone to sing along isn't the goal, the slower songs like Jack of All Trades and This Depression are gripping in their sense of delicate charm as the battered punk soul of The Boss manages to shine through his roughened vocals. The gospel-vibe blues rock performances in Rocky Ground is also effective here, with the chilling harmonies with backing vocalist Michelle Moore, plus her rapping bridge creating an atmosphere that is perfect for heightening the songs cauterization of struggle and worry.
 But with this album, you're never far from hearing a series of wonderful life-affirming rock n' roll songs with influences from gospel, blues and folk music and the songwriting allows for big sing-along choruses constantly and there is little that carries a much greater uplifting charm than Bruce Springsteen. 
 Truly, Wrecking Ball is an album for the people. it's an album that creates a sense of community and rousing happiness. It's awash with total delight. I would advise those feeling bitter and hateful of everything not to approach this album any time soon. Everyone else; jump right in.

 Bruce Springsteen's Wrecking Ball is out now via Columbia. Springsteen will perform at The Isle of Wight Festival at Seaclose Park in June and at hard Rock Calling in Hyde Park, London in July.

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