Producers: Bruce Springsteen, Jon Landau, Steve Van Zandt.
All tracks have been digitally remastered.
Recorded at The Power Station, New York, New York.
Only Springsteen could have got away with releasing a double album with 19 tracks of what was basically the same song. Such was his standing that he did, and it worked like a dream. Almost all the tracks hit you in the stomach, with burning saxophone from Clarence Clemons and piercing wurlitzer organ. Bruce, meanwhile, sings of cars and girls and girls and cars, but at no stage does he forget that this is rock 'n' roll. With this release Springsteen completed a rite of passage. Described as the "new Dylan" early in his career, the singer proved this tag a fallacy, drawing on Dansette pop - Phil Spector, Gary US Bonds, Mitch Ryder - rather than the folk tradition. The singer articulated the dilemmas of America's blue-collar workforce, encapsulating a generation trapped in a post-60s malaise. He does so with sumptuous melodies which draw in, rather than confront, the listener and show Springsteen not just as a magnetic showman, but as a pensive, literate songwriter.
What the critics say...
Rolling Stone - Ranked #86 in Rolling Stone's "100 Greatest Albums Of The Eighties" survey (November 1989).
Q (12/94, p.170) - 3 Stars - Good - "...may yet prove to be the greatest evocation of Springsteen's vision, laden as equally with childhood memories and first sex as with life's current disillusions and stale sex....[the title track is] impossibly beautiful..."
CMJ (11/15/99, p.24) - "...THE RIVER's got cars, girls, sex, unemployment and alcohol; when you've got a hot band behind you, making all that stuff resonate, well, brother, that's called rock'n'roll."
- Ties That Bind, The
- Sherry Darling
- Jackson Cage
- Two Hearts
- Independence Day
- Hungry Heart
- Out In The Street
- Crush On You
- You Can Look (But You Better Not Touch)
- I Wanna Marry You
- River, The
- Point Blank
- Cadillac Ranch
- I'm A Rocker
- Fade Away
- Stolen Car
- Price You Pay, The
- Drive All Night
- Wreck On The Highway
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