Bruce Springsteen – Magic
President & CEO
Bruce Springsteen was born September 23, 1949 in Long Branch, NJ and grew up in Freehold where he began his music career before moving to Asbury Park, which he considered home. I give Springsteen credit for doing the one thing that no one else would do, and that’s bringing back Asbury Park. The band itself has been together over 20 years. Members have come and gone, but the original four are still there. For the record, this album was not sent to me by his PR or management – a friend gave it to me as a gift. So although we are “just a webzine”, we will still pay tribute and review this cd. From the first song, the great Libra again is sending out a message. He has found his roots, from the days of Greetings from Asbury Park to his massive hit, Born to Run – which made him who he is today. So let’s take a look at this lovely cd, and see what the boss has given us – has he become a freeman or is he still stuck in the Cadillac Ranch?
1. Radio Nowhere – this is a tribute to the victims of 9/11. Their souls are looking for a way home, they are asking “do you hear me?” - does anyone remember them? These are the souls that are still stuck at ground zero, wanting somebody to hear them. They are looking for answers and are tired of looking for the mystery train to take them home. Instead of building another tower, they should have built them a park. They want answers and they want them from Bruce. He is their conduit. He is telling the world what they have to say. He is the only one who can hear their souls.
2. You’ll Be Coming Down – this is an ex trying to win his girl back from a guy that she loves but who is just fucking using her. This makes me wonder if there are problems in the Springsteen marriage. Who is he writing about? His relationship? – Only a Libra would do that.
3. Living in the Future – fantastic song! If you are a true Springsteen fan, it is the answer to your prayers; Promise Land, Spirit in the Night, Badlands, and Born to Run all wrapped up in one song. When you listen to the song, if you are smart enough to understand his anagrams, each verse covers each of those songs, his lifelong work carries on. This is a masterpiece and should have been the first single.
4. Your Own Worst Enemy – everybody makes mistakes. And this poor soul in the song, like everyone else in this world, doesn’t know what they want, where they are going. One minute you are a toddler, then a teen, then an adult and you are wondering where exactly life is taking you. You are scared of aging; you don’t want mirrors in the house to see the ghost staring back at you. You see all the people you have hurt in the past. So what you have to do now is stop living in the past, stop living for tomorrow, and simply live for right now.
5. Gypsy Biker – a family finds out they have lost their son in the war and they are so overcome with grief that no one is talking about it. This song is clearly dedicated to the troops that have passed and the people who are left remembering them. The soldier who died in this song must have had one hell of a bike.
6. Girls in Their Summer Clothes – This song is a combination of Thunder Road and Rosalita (Come Out Tonite) - the girl who wouldn’t leave her oppressive home to be with him. And he’s still waiting at his door for her as even still she passes him by.
7. I’ll Work for Your Love – this is dedicated to his record label, his pr, and his management. He’ll do anything you want, he’ll love you forever, just let him be himself again. He is tired of being stuck on Cadillac Ranch. He is tired of making music that people want to hear. He wants to make the music he is making now. That is the message that he is giving to you... are you hearing him? And you know who you are…I can imagine him thinking… when I’m dead, I want on my tombstone “thank god, thank god, I am free at last from all you corporate assholes.”
8. Magic – you could take this as a dedication to Criss Angle or early Harry Houdini. They can give you the best show on earth, but they need to be free to do the show they want to do. He wants to be remembered as he was when he played for himself when he was younger. And there are users in the world who have used him, and in the end, we all use each other. So we are all playing magic tricks of a sort on everyone. I think it’s time that Bruce goes back and starts playing magic tricks of his own and get his own voice back. You can feel the void - he is trying to give us a message. Let me be who I am.
9. Last To Die – Bruce seems to be reliving his days of Jungleland – for any of you new Springsteen fans, who haven’t heard Jungleland - Go get yourself a copy. This song is a masterpiece. Its spooky but in a delicious way. And yet it covers this generation, our troops, our boys coming home and being killed in the fields. It’s time to bring them home.
10. Long Walk Home – This is freaky. It reminds me of Thunder Road in so many ways. But this time it’s a soldier coming come and they have his funeral procession. He is planted high on the hill. He waits. He tells his lover – because in his mind his soul is still alive - that he walks the streets of his town trying to find his way back home to her…but don’t wait up for him close your blinds and pray for him. He is buried next to his father. You can visit anytime. Everyone remembers WW2 and Korea. Everyone remembers Nam and the Gulf War. And the mess that we are in now, this mighty mess of bullshit… But not one vet since Nam has been given any real respect. And here Bruce is giving them all the respect they deserve.
11. Devil’s Arcade – this is a love letter from a soldier to his partner telling her how much he wants to come home and what is really happening over there. This soldier is writing what he feels. He doesn’t want to come home in a body bag, he just wants to come home alive to the woman he loves. Is that too much to ask for, Mr. Bush? Bring our troops home. Or more girls will be receiving letters like this. And by the time they make it home they wont be alive, but in a casket or mutilated by war. So let them get out of this hellhole known as the devil’s arcade that you created.
Bruce must love Atlanta, Ga – Bruce started his recordings right here in Southern Track Studios with the help of Brendan O’Brien. The rest of this album was recorded at Henson recording studios in Hollywood, Ca. I love the idea that he has used Brendan O’Brien on his last 2 projects – he is letting Bruce be Bruce. But here is my question – how is Bruce getting away with this with Shorefire Media and his PR Marylyn Laverty down his back. Bruce must be breaking his umbilical cord with Shorefire. He is becoming the man he used to be and has always wanted to be. He is tired of being a puppet. So now, he has taken control again. A musician should be able to write exactly what they want to say. Like Petty, where he fought for his rights for creativity and he still has them, Bruce himself did this, until the current ball and chain wrapped around his leg. It’s time to be free. If I were to rate this album, I would give it a 9 ½ or 10. The album is a masterpiece because it is a salute to the troops and victims of 9/11.
I wonder if Shorefire Media, when they read this, are they going to start letting webzines cover Springsteen? People read more on the web than they do hard copy – think about it, Marylyn. I think Shorefire Media should change their ways of being exclusive only to hard copy. Wake up and get with the 21st century.