Bruce Springsteen – Live In Dublin

Live In Dublin (2007)

B

1. Atlantic City 2. Old Dan Tucker 3. Eyes On The Prize 4. Jesse James 5. Further On (Up The Road) 6. O Mary Don’t You Weep 7. Eerie Canal 8. If I Should Fall Behind 9. My Oklahoma Home 10. Highway Patrolman 11. Mrs. McGrath 12. How Can A Poor Man Stand Such Times And Live 13. Jacob’s Ladder 14. Long Time Comin’ 15. Open All Night 16. Pay Me My Money Down 17. Growin’ Up 18. When The Saints Go Marching In 19. This Little Light Of Mine 20. American Land 21. Blinded By The Light 22. Love Of The Common People 23. We Shall Overcome

 

Do you ever come to realize that you like a band for completely different reasons than everyone else? Like Arcade Fire. Their fun, catchy new album is getting panned by practically everyone except me, apparently because, based on a browse through the Arcade Fire subreddit, the lyrics aren’t “deep” enough. Are there really that many people in the world who think Arcade Fire’s lyrics are actually deep? Win Butler writes with all the cultural insight of a freshman philosophy major. Some flippancy is welcome from him, in my opinion. Same with Bruce! He writes great pop songs! But his legions of buttlickers would rather hear fuckin’ “Jungleland.” Maybe I just have poor taste, which is entirely possible. I do spend most of my Sundays watching Bar Rescue marathons, after all.

Anyway, Bruce took his so-called “Sessions Band” on the road with him to spread their swingin’ old timey jazz-folk party far and wide. Live in Dublin sees them play almost every song from We Shall Overcome, which sound exactly the same as the studio versions, just with the crowd singing along and Bruce sounding even hoarser. So I won’t bother discussing those, thereby sparing us from having to dwell on Bruce’s gross ‘20s jazz singer impression on “O Mary Don’t You Weep.” However, they also play a number of other songs, which can be divided into two categories and which I shall now list and describe for your reading pleasure.

ADDITIONAL FOLK COVERS:

-“How Can a Poor Man Stand Such Times and Live?” – Great (and short!) bluesy tune with new Springsteen-penned lyrics about Hurricane Katrina.

-“When the Saints Go Marching In” – Whose bright fucking idea was it to play “When the Saints Go Marching In” as a quiet, quavering ballad, like they were trying not to wake a napping butterfly or some shit? Whoever it was, do they hate fun?

-“This Little Light of Mine” – Now this is more like it! Suddenly I’m at a New Orleans funeral having the time of my life! Yeehaw!

-“Love of the Common People” – Generic reggae sung by someone other than Bruce.

 

REARRANGED VERSIONS OF OLD SPRINGSTEEN SONGS:

-“Atlantic City” – Retains absolutely no aspect of the original melody, which makes it an immensely more boring song.

-“Further On (Up the Road)” – Once again, this is basically an entirely new song, going from a savage electric blues rocker to a lilting Irish folk ballad. It’s OK.

-“If I Should Fall Behind” – Same deal. Why even bother calling this waltz “If I Should Fall Behind,” especially since I’m almost positive the “new” melody was stolen from some old fiddle tune? Just write some new lyrics! It’s not like anyone cares about this dull, dull song from Bruce’s least loved album anyway. Nice harmonizing between Bruce and Patti, though.

-“Highway Patrolman” – At last! A song that actually sounds like itself! A full band version of the Nebraska classic whose lovely piano and pedal steel fit like a glove. Beautiful.

-“Long Time Comin’” – Sounds exactly like the Devils & Dust version, which is fine by me. This is a good tune! Nice going, Old Bruce!

-“Open All Night” – Transformed into a masturbatory 8-minute doo-wop/boogie solo fest. Fun, but eh. Whatever.

-“Growin’ Up” – Played sort of like an early Dylan song. I like it! The new wrinkles Bruce adds to the melody keep the song fresh without rendering it unrecognizable.

-“American Land” – Actually, this is a new Bruce song! It’s a speedy Irish jig celebrating the melting pot that is America. Somebody report this guy to ICE! Immigration is anti-American! Death to those illegals on the Mayflower!

-“Blinded By the Light” – Sounds like a terrible reject from The Fiddler on the Roof. What in the ever loving fuck.

 

Someday, hopefully soon, I will visit Ireland and ask those ancient rolling hills if they remember that one time Bruce Springsteen came and played that godawful rearrangement of “Blinded By the Light.” If the answer I receive isn’t either a mysterious pennywhistle trill or a drunk guy yelling incoherently from a nearby pub, I will be disappointed.



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