Friday, 24 June 2011

Random Review #75 Bruce Springsteen - The Ghost Of Tom Joad

C5S10CD15 Picked via Facebook by Sharon Taylor, thanks Sharon your OCD worked out nicely.

I have to say prior to this review that I’m a big Springsteen fan, he can do little wrong in my eyes, at 60 he is still one of the great live performers and he continues to release relevant music rather than coasting on past glories and let’s be honest he has enough to songs in the bank never to write another and tour greatest hits packages for the next 10 years if he so wishes.

This was a big deal when it was released in 1995 a Springsteen acoustic album, I know we had Nebraska prior to this but that was a load of demo’s that they thought were good enough to release (they were) but this was the first true acoustic album. You have to remember that Springsteen is the only artist to do MTV’s Unplugged, plugged in as he wasn’t comfortable interpreting his songs acoustically! Now with Devil’s and Dust and We Shall Overcome we take for granted Springsteen’s credentials at doing this but in 1995 this was a big deal.

I have mentioned Nebraska and Devil’s and Dust and have to admit if I’m looking for a bit of acoustic Springsteen I would automatically reach for either of those albums rather than this one such is their quality. This isn’t a bad album, far from it just in my eyes it’s not as good as the other two.

Twelve original songs written by Springsteen some played by Springsteen alone and some backed with a band (not the E Street Band) stripped down you realise (if you didn’t already know) what a great songwriter Springsteen is. Due to the nature of these songs none really make his current live set and therefore seem to be forgotten about but there is lots to like here the album opener and title track The Ghost of Tom Joad and the brilliant Highway 29 are worthy of  mention.

I can’t pretend I still won’t choose Nebraska or Devil’s and Dust before this one in the future in my opinion they are stronger albums but I have enjoyed the dalliance I have had with The Ghost of Tom Joad this week.

Mark 7/10

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