Bruce Springsteen/Magic [Bonus Tracks]

MagicMagic is the 15th studio album by Bruce Springsteen, released in 2007. It is his first with the E Street Band since The Rising in 2002. This album was #2 on Rolling Stones list of the Top 50 Albums of 2007.

Radio Nowhere—-Delivered with that classic E-Street sound, Springsteen enters with a remarkable vocal…as he ages, his voice becomes even more accessible. This is raucous but so damn accessible I listen to it over and over again for the sheer magic of it all. Weinberg delivers a fantastic drum track and the joining of Springsteen and Little Steven’s voices are like a long-lost friend. This is phenomenal.

You’ll Be Comin’ Down—-With a nice Alt-Country feel, Springsteen delivers a relaxed vocal with lyrics that are inspired to make you think and feel. The chorus is bolstered by a bevy of voices…giving the song a remarkable warm feeling. This is classic Springsteen…I love this release.

Livin’ In The Future—-Beginning with the classic Clarence saxophone, Bruce delivers his vocal sounding ten years younger and invigorated by the band’s presence. This sounds to me like it came straight off the Classic The River release. This is energetic, delivered as a nice story song with some great backdrop involvement from Steven and Clarence. This is remarkable….sounding like 1980!!!

Your Own Worst Enemy—-This has a nice bit or orchestration to the intro…Springsteen delivers a vocal that sounds tired and worn…just as it should be as it fits the mood of the song wonderfully. this is sedate and quiet…allowing you to think about the words and the meanings behind them. Patti joins in on the chorus…giving the song an even warmer feel. This remains a very classic Springsteen effort.

Gypsy Biker—-Out comes the wonderful harmonica and you want to reach for Nebraska for a quick listen. Bruce again delivers a nice story in a remarkable 4 minutes…leaving you feeling like you heard all he had to say. With wonderful Americana references and a masterful chorus, this is another standout track. The songwriting is superb and the delivery…although stripped down remains full and lush.

Girls In Their Summer Clothes—-This has always been and remains my favorite track from this release. This contains everything about Bruce and The E-Street Band that is wonderful. Again full of references that make you long for simpler times and warm sunny summer days that last forever, this leaves you a bit low but with a nice sense of elation at the same time. This is remarkable…I have waited far too long to listen to this again…just wonderful.

I’ll Work For Your Love—-Piano based at the onset, the song open up nicely with a honky-tonk feel that will have you tapping your foot along with the rest of the band. Bruce delivers a vocal that is a bit rough around the edges…fitting in with the feel of the song wonderfully well. The gentle fiddle that plays in the backdrop of the song adds so much…even though it is not right in your face. This is like the title suggest…Magic!

Magic—-Again sounding like a long-lost track from Nebraska or Tunnel Of Love, this is sedate and full of dark lyrics and beautiful Country sounds that make you smile from the inside out. This is brilliant…leaving me with warm feelings and more than a bit of melancholy. This remains another really favorite track of mine.

Last To Die—-Returning to a much more straight forward rocking sound, Springsteen and Co. allow the music to propel the song…the vocal almost secondary to the mastery of the music. This is classic Springsteen…..full of lyrics that are vivid and easily held on to. This is real Americana…something that is rare and hard to find these days. Brilliant.

Long Walk Home—-Stripped down and bare, this finds Bruce at his introspective best…I love these nice mellow intense tracks of his. This is some of the best material you have heard from him and the band in quite sometime..although The Rising was a pretty remarkable release as well. When the song opens up, it is never overbearing…allowing you to catch every single word that is written and sung. This is just fantastic.

Bonus Tracks:

Devil’s Arcade—-Beginning almost silent, the track takes a moment to get started…and once it does, it delivers a sound that is so funeral and mellow that your head automatically hangs a bit lower. This is beautifully delivered…the vocal will make you almost weep. The music is almost orchestrated…full of lush sounds and a desolation that leaves me lonely…..wonderful!

Terry’s Song—-Stripped bare and delivered in a naked manner, this finds Bruce at his best . The vocal is pure and unassuming…natural and real..showing his age in a masterful way and his emotion in a pure and unadulterated way. This is sad and real…when Patti and Steven join in on the lyric you are left even more devastated. This is an ode to a fallen band member…and the sentiment is so real you hurt.

****3/4 out of 5


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