Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Live Review: Bruce Springsteen & The E-Street Band 4/23/16 Brooklyn, NY

Bruce Springsteen & The E-Street Band
4/23/16 Barclay's Center
Brooklyn, NY

With the American section of Bruce Springsteen & The E-Street Band’s tour coming to an end tickets for Saturday Night's Brooklyn Show were in high demand as fans of multiple generations were in attendance to sing and dance along with the energy-abundant rockstar. This tour is celebrating 1980’s double album The River as the group plays all 20 tracks as well as Springsteen classics.
The real treat came right away however as the band strolled out on stage, under purple lights, and after a brief discussion went directly into “Purple Rain” paying musical tribute to the recently departed Prince. From one showman to another, Springsteen mentioned that Prince “was the best” and that he was “humbled” whenever he saw him live. Nils Lofgren’s solo was an excellent combo of tribute/inspired by and the whole group (clad in various levels of purple) truly nailed a rock and roll moment.

After playing the outtake “Meet Me In The City”, which was written and recorded during the same sessions, The River rolled out. Bruce mentioned that this album was crafted during a time that he was trying to find out who he was and would be going forward. It is a mix of deep reflective ballads and Jersey Shore party rockers that don’t always mesh perfectly, but that juxtaposition is what makes for an engaging listen and live show. 

Sonically the highs of Springsteen's vocals and Jake Clemons saxophone along with the low bass of Garry Tallent and drums of Max Weinberg were clear all night but mid level guitars got a bit muddy when Lofgren, Steven Van Zandt, Soozie Tyrell, and Springsteen (along with the keys of Roy Bittan and Charles Giordano) all were attacking the tracks. 

Highlights from The River were, the upbeat “Hungry Heart” (complete with Boss Crowd Surfing) a dramatic “Fade Away”, the Weinberg led power of “Crush on You”, a slow dance fueled “I Want To Marry You” and the epic title track. The crowd may have wandered a bit during songs like “Point Blank” and “Jackson Cage” but for the most part the sold out house were note for note with the band. While performing this album with grace and spirit would be more than enough for 95% of touring performers, this is Springsteen we are talking about and that was just the appetizer.

After mentioning Brooklyn was his mom’s hometown the Boss dove into his classic tracks with the crowd singing to “Badlands” “Because The Night” and “Thunder Road” with wild abandon. The house lights came on and the band kept it rolling with one of the best arena rock songs ever written as “Born To Run” reverberated around Barclay Center. It still wasn’t over as the legendary front-man pumped out an energetic “Rosalita” a soulful “10th Ave Freeze Out” and crowd participation favorites “Dancing In The Dark” and a cover of The Isley Brothers “Shout” which concluded the over three and a half hour show.
Simply a mammoth set from a world class performer and band, dedicated to a recently deceased peer and a magical night of revisiting the past and being more than prepared for the current and future of rock and roll.

No comments:

Post a Comment