Tuesday, 28 August 2018

Bruce Springsteen - Live Collections From 1978



Recorded live at five different venues in 1978

These "classic radio broadcasts" are now, thankfully, legal releases. They can either be bought in this CD form on Amazon or from Springsteen's official site. Either way, they are legal and the sound quality is the same on either. This box includes five gigs in their entirety from July to December 1978 - Agora Ballroom Cleveland, Roxy Theatre West Hollywood, Atlanta, Passaic New Jersey and Winterland, San Francisco.

It is fantastic to be able to hear these five entire concerts from 1978 just as they were played. Springsteen's previous "official" live releases were often patchy affairs - the Live 1975-85 box set was somewhat underwhelming in that cuts were taken willy-nilly from different shows in different years, so it did not have the continuity of a live show. These do, they are exactly as they were played and they see The E St Band at the top of their game, in possibly their best ever era. Springsteen and the band are on fire in gigs like these. Sure, the sound quality is certainly not "audiophile" but as Bruce might say, "I don't give a damn...". The sound is surprisingly good, however, and it sounds genuinely "live". Some are better than others. Winterland is probably the best. Close your eyes and you feel, and wish, you were there. Crowd noises, whoops and hollers, they're fine by me. It's a live gig.

The Racing In The Street leading into Thunder Road part (played on each gig) is just Springsteen heaven. The previous official live cuts have not, disappointingly, not reproduced them played like this, as Bruce did in 1978, one after the other. Indeed, Live 1975-85 did not even include the full band, iconic version of Thunder Road.

This marvellous live, five gig, CD showcases Bruce Springsteen live as he was in the glory year of 1978. He possibly never bettered this. Thankfully, we can now listen to it. I couldn't recommend it highly enough.


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