Keno's Classic Rock n Roll Web Site
BORN TO RUN
Released - 1975 by Columbia Records. Produced by Bruce Springsteen, Jon Landau & Mike Appel
Bruce Springsteen: Lead and Backing Vocals; Guitar, Harmonica
Garry Tallent - Bass
Ernest Carter - Drums on "Born to Run"
Backing Vocals on "Thunder Road": Roy Bittan, Mike Appel & Steven Van Zandt
All songs written by Bruce Springsteen.
This is one of those albums that I never owned, yet it still brings back old memories. My old and late childhood friend, Mark Norton, like myself, loved the hell out of the Beatles and the Stones, but unlike me, Mark never really liked any other artists, other than the Who a bit. But when this album came out in 1975, damn did he see the light of Bruce Springsteen, and did he love this album. Mark owned this revved up 1974 360 Duster that he half lived in, and on the car's old 8 track, for more than a year after Born To Run was released, this LP was the main tape he played, pretty much every day. Since I moved away around that time, I'm not sure if he ever stopped playing this LP daily up till his death a few years later.
I finally purchased the remastered CD of Born To Run only a few months ago, since I was asked to review it. Heck, with only 8 songs on it, you hear most of them on the radio enough to where one doesn't even need to buy a copy!
Perhaps Springsteen freaks would rate this album higher than I, that's totally understood, but Born To Run is still a masterpiece, and a total rating of 8.5 isn't bad, either. Some say you should never rate albums song for song, but I never understood that, other than perhaps for some of the LPs put out by Pink Floyd, or perhaps The Who's Tommy. But guess what, you only can hear one song play at a time, especially when you hear a cut off of the radio, so I see nothing wrong in rating any LP song for song, and it works out just fine for this album.
The best numbers on here are (and in order of their greatness): "Born to Run", "Thunder Road", and "Tenth Average Freeze-Out". All of the songs on this album are written with a certain feeling that makes you understand what Bruce was just getting at with his lyrics, but these top 3 songs all go one step ahead, not only in Springsteen's vocal delivery, but with his band's playing, too. Boy can you just feel these songs deep down!
Bruce has a way of singing that not too many others can match. Can anybody else carry a single word in the way he does? Take the song "Tenth Average Freeze-Out" and the very simple word "and" - Bruce just stretches this word out to where it sounds almost unrecoizable and pronounced in a way unlike anybody has tried to pronunched it before. He does this with other simple words in other songs too, of course. He can take a simple lyric and just make it cry out like no other, and that is what gives some of the songs on this LP that might be lacking a bit, say, like "Backstreets", more life.
There is only one song on here that I recall not liking the first time I heard it almost 35 years ago, and I still don't dig it today, that being "Meeting Across the River". It is the only song where his vocal style perhaps ruins the song. It needed a different approach to it, that's for sure, the vocals don't come close to fitting the song at all. But other than that one, all of the other tunes on here are at the least good if not great.
Yes, I can see and understand why my buddy Mark ,and so many others, really dug this album a lot.
- Keno, 2009
To listen to some soundclips from BORN TO RUN or to purchase it, click on: Born To Run
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