Working On A Dream

Belgian weekly Humo started its Working On A Dream review as follows : "The previous Springsteen album, "Magic", is currently being used as a coaster for Illy coffee. The last outstanding album Bruce Springsteen made, "Born In The USA", is exactly 25 years old. In between, he made good ("Tunnel Of Love", "The Rising"), mediocre ("Lucky Town", "The Ghost Of Tom Joad", "Devils + Dust") and weak albums ("Human Touch", "Magic"). But The Boss is back. "Working On A Dream" is his best since "Born In The USA"."

What a load of preposterous claptrap! Did the journalist (called CP, if that is his real name) ever write a good song? Did he?

My first impression of Working On A Dream? It's yet again a very good, recommended album and The E-Street Band truly is one of the best ensembles ever. But I hold Magic in equal high regard.

Golden tracks :

- Outlaw Pete [epic storytelling]
- My Lucky Day [old fashioned rock]
- Working On A Dream [poptimistic]
- What Love Can Do []
- Good Eye [distorted rock]
- Tomorrow Never Knows [the beginning closely resembles Pieter Embrechts's Barcelona]
- Kingdom Of Days [I like the chorus in the end]
- The Last Carnival [touching Federici tribute]
- The Wrestler [incredible movie-inspired ballad]

Queen Of The Supermarket, This Life and Life Itself are good but not great.

Surprise, Surprise is very repetitive. It's a genuinely "underwhelming" Springsteen track. The only other one that comes to mind, is The Fuse from 2002's The Rising. What a dud!

According to Wikipedia, the deluxe CD-edition and the vinyl version of the album include a bonus track called A Night With The Jersey Devil. I own the vinyl, but I have yet to find this track. Weird, to say the least.

Conclusion? Working On A Dream is another excellent addition to the ever burgeoning Springsteen oeuvre. But his best since 1984? Bollocks!

Julian De Backer, 14 March 2009