From the Vault...


Bruce Springsteen
"Darkness On The Edge Of Town"

© Columbia Records

Year of Release: 1978

track listing
  • Badlands
  • Adam Raised A Cain
  • Something In The Night
  • Candy's Room
  • Racing In The Street
  • The Promised Land
  • Factory
  • Streets Of Fire
  • Prove It All Night
  • Darkness On The
    Edge Of Town

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    Bruce Springsteen
    "Darkness On The Edge Of Town"

    Bruce Springsteen's (first) breakthrough album was in 1977, Born To Run, and with all great groundbreaking albums, everyone is always anxious to see if the followup album would be as exceptional. In most-to-all cases, it's not. Yet, Darkness On The Edge Of Town is an exceptional album. To some, it may not have been exceptional as Born To Run, but in my opinion, every release of Bruce Springsteen's has always been excellent-to-superior status.

    FM Radio was busy playing a lot of songs from this album when it was first released, yet in today's Classic Rock and Album Oriented Rock (AOR) format, it seems that you don't hear many songs from Darkness, as say Born To Run or even Born In The U.S.A. This also is the same for not many songs heard from The River, other than "Hungry Heart." From Born To Run, the most common songs heard nowadays is the title track or "Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out." Most AOR stations feature the older Springsteen material, instead of songs taken from U.S.A. and future releases. WHY? I have yet to hear songs from Nebraska, Ghost Of Tom Joad, and Human Touch on a regular basis... WHY??? Anyways...

    In 1978, the year when Darkness was released, such great tunes were getting regular airplay: "Badlands" (which I seldom hear on the radio sometimes...) "Adam Raised A Cain" (which I never hear; yet it may not be considered a regular favorite as others...) "Prove It All Night" (a song that should get regular airplay on AOR, yet it's another song I seldom hear on AOR...) and the title track (another should-be regular...)

    The remaining songs are the ones always interesting to listen to. The ballad "Something In The Night" shows the tender side of Bruce, likewise "Racing In The Street." These two songs I can see being great ones for Bruce to play in concerts to slow down the pace a bit. Especially "Racing In The Night," a great album track to place in the category of "Lost Album Tracks." And it is just as exceptional as "Jungleland" and "Backstreets" from Born To Run.

    "Candy's Room" does bring back the "I remember that one..." as it displays rapid energy, with the drumming and all, "The Promised Land" would be a concert favorite, rather than get more exposure on radio playlists.

    "Factory" on the other hand, has a great Country piano sound, and is another great "lost album track." "Streets Of Fire" shows the rough-edged voice of Bruce, and is probably considered (if I were to pick one), the least favorite from this release.

    Bruce Springsteen started singing songs dealing with Americana and its working-class problems on this album. This would be a constant factor in his upcoming releases -- The River and Born In The U.S.A. (Another artist who would follow in this factor is John Mellencamp.) Darkness may not have reached high status as its predecessor album, Born To Run, yet it is another overlooked album that truly defines Bruce Springsteen as a gifted songwriter and performer. Darkness is another exceptional album in his early career, yet his Born In The U.S.A. release made him a huge megastar and household name to all. Bruce Springsteen has always been popular since Born To Run; it would just take time, and a few albums more, to make him the superstar he proved himself to be and beyond.

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    Jimmy Dorsey--Amapola: His 24 Greatest Hits
    Next Review: #778
    Huey Lewis & The News--Plan B