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Wrecking Ball (Vinyl LP)

381 customer reviews

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Vinyl, March 6, 2012
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Editorial Reviews

Marking his 17th studio album, 'Wrecking Ball' features 11 new Springsteen recordings and was produced by Ron Aniello with Bruce Springsteen and executive producer Jon Landau.

Said long-time manager Jon Landau, "Bruce has dug down as deep as he can to come up with this vision of modern life. The lyrics tell a story you can't hear anywhere else and the music is his most innovative of recent years. The writing is some of the best of his career and both veteran fans and those who are new to Bruce will find much to love on 'Wrecking Ball.'"

Landau told Rolling Stone magazine that the record is an ambitious "big-picture piece of work. It's a rock record that combines elements of both Bruce's classic sound and his Seeger Sessions experience, with new textures and styles." Members of the E Street Band play on the album, along with a variety of outside musicians, including Tom Morello. "Bruce and Ron used a wide variety of players to create something that both rocks and is very fresh."

This album is pressed on two 180 gram LPs and includes a CD.
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Product Details

  • Vinyl (March 6, 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 3
  • Label: Columbia
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (381 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #17,906 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

146 of 167 people found the following review helpful By Old T.B. on March 6, 2012
Format: Audio CD
Wrecking Ball is an angry album dealing with hard and desperate times: unemployment, economic discrepancies, and personal displacement are just a few of the underlying themes addressed. It is also an album where many of the musical styles Bruce Springsteen has engaged in come together, along with new elements such as loops and a more pronounced use of female singers.

It opens with We Take Care of Our Own, a song that musically sounds like vintage E Street Band; it is, in its own way, as powerful an opening track as Badlands or Born in the U.S.A. Like that latter song, it could receive a mistaken interpretation by the casual listener drawn in to the catchy chorus. But, where the chorus declares "We take care of our own," the lyrics examine an America where needed help never appears.

Shackled and Drawn and Death to My Hometown both bear strong resemblances to the tracks Springsteen performed during his Seeger Sessions time. With their Irish feel, they sound like songs that Shane MacGowan could sink his crooked teeth into with joy. Easy Money, a song about a man going out with his lover to commit crimes to make some cash, has a ramshackle, country feel that perfectly matches Springsteen's grizzled snarl.

The title track presents Springsteen reminiscing about coming up in the "swamps of Jersey," referencing his classic track Rosalita. It is a defiant song in which Bruce dares all comers to "take your best shot/let me see what you got." It is an exhilarating song; at 62, The Boss is still willing to throw down the gauntlet.

Wrecking Ball, for all its anger, ends on a hopeful note. Land of Hope and Dreams, a song that debuted during the 1999-2000 E Street reunion tour, uses the imagery of the freedom train carrying passengers to a better destination.
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57 of 67 people found the following review helpful By Michael Neiss on March 8, 2012
Format: Audio CD
1975 was a very long time ago. So, with that little slice of obviousness behind us, what exactly is Bruce Springsteen up to on the other side of the looking-glass as I consider the significance of his much anticipated new album Wrecking Ball. Springsteen has never had it easy managing expectations - even before listening for the first time, I am already half-smiling at the consternation and intellectual discomfort of many reviewers as they ponder the delphic riddle that confounds them with every new Springsteen release - whether or not his new music returns New Jersey's favorite son to the working class zen so powerfully forged during his first decade of work.

Respectfully, with nearly forty years now seperating Wrecking Ball from the work that made his reputation, a side-by-side comparison seems unfair and absurdly front-loaded. The music that Springsteen created between 1973 and 1982 is now really for the ages and represents a nearly impossible standard for any artist to live up to.

Unfortunately for Springsteen, once his own PR flaks started cranking out the agitprop touting his imminent release as the time-machine return of the "old Bruce" and "the best" since Born To Run, The River or... (fill in the blanks) it seemed inevitable that Wrecking Ball would, could never overcome the weight of their very wishful but ultimately, weightless hyperbole. To be fair, there's really no objective assessment worth a damn that can be made for music that we have been listening to for mere hours against songs that has been seminal to the rock soundtrack for almost four decades.
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21 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Margaret Gentry on October 13, 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I got the album in preparation for going to Springsteen's September 2012 concert in Washington, DC, as part of his 2012 Wrecking Ball Tour. The concert featured most of the Wrecking Ball album songs and, at 62, the Boss is still the Boss. Before a packed house in the 45,000-seat Washington Nationals baseball stadium, he performed non-stop for close to four hours with the crowd-pleasing vigor of a 20-year-old.
"Wrecking Ball" is classic Springsteen -- poignant, moving, biting lyrics telling the story of the millions in our nation who work hard all their lives and never get much of a break. If you sympathize with his views, you'll love the album. If you're among the privileged rich, you probably won't.
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95 of 128 people found the following review helpful By Boxodreams on March 8, 2012
Format: Vinyl
Bruce wants to carve lyrics in stones that can be thrown at the fortresses of power. The problem is that he has abandoned the storytelling that got him here. His small was always writ large, and now, on Wrecking Ball, it's all large, even when invoking the weak and exploited among us. His brilliant "The Rising" in response to the World Trade Center attack, dealt in majestic language that dropped down, at least in brush strokes, into identifiably real lives. The power there was fueled by a cohesive musical vision. Here, that musical vision feels very much that of a producer, one I've never heard of making his first appearance on a Springsteen record. It's bloated and poorly defined. I hate the lousy choirs and cheap artificial drums and layer upon layer of stuff. Penny whistles bleating through what could be a Fairlight Computer. Where is the thunder? The enterprise is more dirigible, impressive but in no way agile. I can imagine, over time, hooking into some of this, but Bruce used to grab you by the jugular right away. He sings out battle cries on "Wrecking Ball" but shows up to the battlefield in a Toyota Avalon. The late Clarence Clemons makes a stirring appearance in a recycled (from the New York live album) "Land of Hopes and Dreams," and I like this studio version just fine. Most of the record, however, feels like the work of a once-important late-middle-aged pro who no longer prowls and breathes the fire of the night. I still like to believe some day this brilliant hero will find his best form again. Bruce is too great to count out. It's just not happening here.
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