Bruce Springsteen: High Hopes

Album review
Bruce Springsteen: High Hopes

Bruce Springsteen

High Hopes

Label: Columbia
Media: CD
Genre: Rock/pop

The Boss is cleaning house, having just finished recording some of his best unreleased material from the past decade. The result is a dozen mostly anthemic rockers that include new studio versions of “American Skin (41 Shots)” and “The Ghost of Tom Joad,” two of seven tracks that feature former Rage Against the Machine guitarist Tom Morello (Rage covered it on Renegades). Most of the E Street Band appears in various configurations, with tracks that feature the late sax player Clarence Clemons and organist Danny Federici. Other notable songs include “The Wall,” Springsteen’s heartfelt tribute to New Jersey rocker Walter Chichon, who went missing in the Vietnam War. Morello contributes his swooping, dive-bombing licks throughout. In general this is Springsteen at his most bombastic. Gone is the inner life revealed on Tunnel of Love, to be replaced by rallying cries for Springsteen’s rock ’n’ roll crusade, spelled out clearly on “This is the Sword,” in which the Boss proclaims: “This is your sword, this is your shield/ This is the power of love revealed.” Two exceptions are the ballad “Down in the Hole,” which sounds like a Born in the U.S.A. outtake, and the closing hymn “Dream Baby Dream.”

More Info

  • primary artist, Bruce Springsteen

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