Bruce Springsteen PETER KNOBLER with GREG MITCHELL - Essay


(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

Bruce Springsteen … has been hiding in New Jersey writing these incredible songs…. [He] can be easily dismissed as "justanotherDylanrip-off" if you're not really listening—but increasingly, as he begins a road he knows has done in fellow travellers, he is his own man and points invitingly to the road not taken…. (p. 31)

Bruce Springsteen's songs offer that wonderfully bewildering problem of how to keep up. Words tumble over one another, phrases mysteriously feel right and then disappear…. This was an entirely new perspective offered, like nothing I'd heard before. There was no given, no center I knew all these spokes were connected to. I was once again on my own with new eyes, and it was exhilarating! All of a sudden I remembered the lack! Patterns had developed, formulas into which songs and musicians and songwriters got routinely thrown, and where music had once inspired and been inspired by passion, things merged and distinctions were blurred and then obliterated. And here, one guy with a scratchy voice and some weird words made the angles sharp again. (p. 32)

I hadn't felt this kind of hard edge/intelligent/lunatic intensity since Blonde on Blonde. (p. 33)

Bruce Springsteen's record is Greetings from Asbury Park, and it's a delight. Completed last September, it offers a picture of the performer/creator as he was stepping out of one sense into another. It's the kind...

(The entire section is 419 words.)