Recordings: Bruce Springsteen – Born to Run 30th Anniversary Edition

    Good thing we’re all stealing the record companies’ music, because it forces them to remaster and re-release their aging classics. More often than not, the new versions come with extras (in this case, a concert DVD, expansive liner notes, and some making-of commentary) — as well as a hefty price tag. Expect the same from the 30th anniversary three-disc set of Born to Run, the album pegged by dinosaur musicians as the epic high point of rock ‘n’ roll.

    “Epic” perfectly describes Springsteen’s romantic missive from his downtrodden Jersey hood, where the day’s entertainment came from fighting, dodging police (back when they were “cherry-tops”), secretly meeting with dolled-up sweethearts and, most importantly, getting the hell out. The E Street Band’s performance is gigantic, from the wailing harmonica opening of “Thunder Road” to the now-cliche sax solo and 12-plus key changes of the awesomely perfect title track. Springsteen was still in his rhyming dictionary days, fresh from his better (but certainly not greater) The Wild, the Innocent, and the E Street Shuffle, recorded when he was still a humble shit. Born to Run isn’t humble, but that’s the charm: Sometimes you need to grab your girl by the arm, leap into your hemi-powered suicide machine and speed off in an everlasting embrace — if only in song form.

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