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March 2, 2012 / jhsaeger

Top Ten Bruce Springsteen Albums (5-1)

The Month of Bruce continues with the top five Springsteen records to round out his ten best. Check out records 10-6 here:

5) Nebraska –Sandwiched between two number one records, Born in the U.S.A. and The River, Nebraska contains a coveted buried treasure. Two versions of the album exist: the released stripped-down demos and the unreleased full band recordings of the LP. Recent history, however, would show that the unreleased recordings have a chance to make it onto a box set. Best Jersey reference: “Atlantic City.”

4) Darkness on the Edge of Town – Due in part to the three-year gap in releases that was prompted by a legal battle and the monstrous success of Born to Run, the sessions for Darkness on the Edge of Town produced several hits for other artists – Patti Smith’s “Because the Night,” Gary U.S. Bonds’ “This Little Girl,” the Pointer Sisters and Robert Gordon’s “Fire.” Best Missing Track: “Because the Night.”

3) Born to Run – Springsteen’s third album, Born to Run is the first in an impressive line of music trivia. The record was produced by then-rising executive Jimmy Iovine, who also produced the critical third albums of Patti Smith and Tom Petty, Easter and Damn the Torpedoes. Favorite track: “Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out.” 

2) Born In The U.S.A. – Of Born In The U.S.A’s twelve songs, seven were turned into singles, including – “Dancing In The Dark,” “Born in the U.S.A.,” “I’m on Fire,” and “Glory Days.” The fact that the radio staple “Glory Days” was released as a single over a year after the record came out as just the fifth single helps to put the scale of the album into perspective. Underrated Track: “Downbound Train.” 

1) The Rising – Whether it was Springsteen’s ability to translate the events of September 11 or the energy of recording with the entire E-Street Band for the first time in 18 years, The Rising is Springsteen’s best and most complete record. The musicianship of the band itself cannot be overlooked either, particularly Clarence Clemons and Nils Lofgren. Best Tracks: “Lonesome Day,” “The Rising.”


Leave a Comment
  1. moviesarelikepeople / Mar 2 2012 9:29 am

    John, John, John…you should know that The Wild, The Innocent & The E-Street Shuffle is Springsteen's best album. It's mad, messy and truly heartfelt and nowhere near as bloated or disillusioned as Born to Run. Vini Lopez is the American Keith Moon! It's moving on from the past and head and shoulders above Greetings from…!Wild & Innocent #1, Nebraska #2 (especially "Reason To Believe" and "Nebraska" which is the plot of the film "Badlands" unfortunately already the title of a Springsteen song).

  2. John Saeger / Mar 2 2012 1:33 pm

    I will agree that Born to Run doesn't excite me quite like many of the other albums on the list, but are you saying Vini Lopez is equal to one of the two greatest drummers (John Bonham) ever? "Reason to Believe" is a terrific song.

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