Review: Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band – “Tower Theater, Philadelphia, 1975”
The year 1975 was quite a 12-month stretch for Bruce Springsteen. After a painstaking recording process, he finally released the Born To Run album, a critical and commercial success which peaked at number three on the Billboard album chart. For the first time, he played to audiences overseas and he appeared on the covers of Time and Newsweek the same week heralded as “Rock’s New Sensation.” On the last night of the year, he wrapped up four-night stand and the Born To Run Tour at the Tower Theater in Upper Darby, PA, just outside of Philadelphia. Parts of this show have been floating around for years, but this is the first time it has been properly mixed and mastered in its entirety for release. The end result is nothing short of spectacular.
The standouts from this 19-song set include a slowed down, piano-driven version of “Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out” that oozes soul, a powerful version of The Animals “It’s My Life,” hard-driving takes on “It’s Hard to Be A Saint in the City” and “Spirit in the Night,” an incredibly energetic version of “Born To Run, ” a nearly 15-minute version of “Rosalita” and an ultra-soulful “Jungleland.” The band is extremely tight and plays with incredible energy and heart throughout. Springsteen sounds like a man on a mission who plays and sings every note like his life depends on it.
I know many fans will not agree with me, but I believe this live set is better than the Agora ’78 show from Cleveland that was released last year. The sound is much better and the band is absolutely on fire. Thanks to Bruce and company for cleaning these old shows up and making them available for fans. I cannot wait to see what is next.