Every time I go to see Bruce, whether its with the E Street Band, or as on this occasion aided and abetted by "The E Street Horns" and "The E Street Choir" or with The Seeger Sessions Band - the energy, quality of musicianship and the sheer joy that everyone on stage takes in being there never ceases to amaze...the audience is a part of the gig from start to finish - feeding the energy up to the stage and getting it back re-doubled.
The set list is almost academic - there is nothing like a Bruce concert for this - you see the roadies taping down the set list for the band members and you know that there is no chance that its going to be adhered to....you can see Bruce calling out changes and songs as it feels right to him and the band just fly into whatever is called with consumate ease and professionalism.
The set featured lots of old favourites and lots of new soon-to-be favourites - lots from the "Wrecking Ball"" album of course - and lots from the catalogue - including a storming version of "Because The Night" which was a delight and "Dancing In The Dark" which had an almost slight swingy feel to it, enhanced by the Horn section, ably featuring Jake Clemons taking the place of his dearly departed and much-loved Uncle Clarence - future tours and recordings will no doubt see Jake bring his own identity more to the fore as an established member of the E Street Band.
The band of course in great form - great to see Nils back at his whirling dervish best during a searing solo on "Because The Night" - amazing what two new hips will do and Max and Gary holding down a solid foundation on drums and bass. Steve, Patti and Suzi bringing their own personalities and contributions to the sound- Steve and Bruce still like a couple of school kids having a great time and Suzi's violin always adds an extra layer of interest to the music - more so on the "Wrecking Ball" music.
Its a tribute to the quality of Bruce's reportoire that the mix of songs from earlier days -10th Avenue Freeze Out with a great tribute to Clarence, Glory Days, Because The Night, "Born" -both "in The USA" and "To Run", My City In Ruins,- through to newer songs like American Land, Jack of All Trades, Death To My Hometown, We Take Care Of Our Own, Wrecking Ball...you could go on all night....all fit so well with each other, even although they are from different eras and styles and are appreciated by the audience, which as he himself said spanned the generations from the young kids through to people "with faces as old as mine"....wish I had half of his energy!
Great night, great energy from the Man Himself - three and a half solid hours, never off the stage and never stopped. Great banter with the audience - Jake putting his back out and the infamous "London curfew" being well featured.....if you have never been to a Bruce gig - go...one of the few that are really worth the mental ticket prices being charged for gigs these days.
- Dublin @
- 17/07/2012 @
Favourite moment: Start to finish superb. @
Setlist: Eh..what set list! @
Opening act(s): Bruce! @
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The Boss Delivers Again !!
- Dublin @
- 18/07/2012 @
Favourite moment: Tribute to Clarence @
Setlist: Set List changes nightly. @
Opening act(s): None. @
Top 100 Contributor
As a hard core fan of Bruce Springsteen since I was a teenager, I always know what to expect from a concert. Even so, Springsteen manages to amaze me every time. His energy is incredible and he really is a show-man, working the crowd non-stop.
Everybody knew about the 'London Curfew' episode last night but he had dealt with that the night before and it was done. Apart from a passing mention, it didn't feature last night, unlike the previous night when he dragged a large power leaver on stage and used it as a prop. He even had a make-believe English 'Bobby' come on stage. But that was the previous night.
Last night the butt of his jokes was Jake Clemons who was wheeled on-stage in a wheel chair having damaged his knees and his back the previous night during the final number. Bruce teased him unmercifully but it was all in fun and was taken as such, both by Clemons and the audience. Incidentally, Jake is the nephew of the late great Clarence Clemons, a stalwarth of the E Street Band since it's inception. Jake is shaping up well and is a good Sax player - but he is young and doesn't have the charisma or charm of his legendary Uncle.
But back to the concert ! Bruce started with an acoustic version of This Hard Land - just him on stage with his guitar and his harmonica. The audience were his from then on ! The band joined him for No Surrender, Two Hearts, The Ties that Bind. We then had the first number from The Wrecking Ball album - We Take Care of our Own. This was followed by Bruce on Piano doing a ballad-like arrangement of Badlands. And so it continued...... My City of Ruins seemed to strike a chord with the audience, with it's chorus of 'come on and rise up'. While most most would be winding up the gig by now,, Bruce was only hitting his stride !! He had lots to give and was very happy to give it.
Springsteen continued to give of his best with some of his most memorable songs. The crowd were totally captivated. When he sang Because The Night everybody was singing along. While this song was a huge hit for Patti Smith it was, in fact, written by Bruce Springsteen and last night, he gave it the full treatment !! During Waitin' on a Sunny Day, Bruce pulled a child out of the crowd to sing with him. The crowd LOVED it - and the child was absolutely charming,. with the cutest little lisp - a real 'Aww' moment. !
By now, we are approx. three hours into the hits. The Band take their bows and leave the stage - the crowd aren't fooled, they are nowhere near finished. Born in the USA got the loudest reaction from the crowd. Born to Run had the crowd bouncing, while dancing was mandatory for Glory Days. The cover of Seven Nights to Rock had the crowd yelling the lines back to the Boss. Dancing in the Dark gives Springsteen the opportunity to pluck two girls from the crowd to dance with him and Jake - reminiscent of the Courtney Cox role in the original video. Tenth Avenue Freezeout got the longest applause of the night, as it incorporated a very touching pictorial tribute to Clarence. People were aware that he is the second original Band Member to lose the battle to live, Danny Federici having preceded him in 2008 following a three year battle with Melanoma. Exit Bruce and Band for the second time.
Still the crowd stayed. Their persistance was rewarded with Rocky Ground and American Land before the Boss finally wrapped up the gig. It was a night to remember - but all Bruce Springsteen concerts are memorable.