Bruce Takes us Through the Streets

Image result for bruce springsteen streets of philadelphia
I'm no fan of the synthed out 80's sound, and I'm sure many would agree it hasn't aged well. Just ask anyone about Bob Dylan's 1985 album Empire Burlesque.

That being said, Bruce Springsteen is the exception. Much of his 80's work used cheesy synths, electronic drums, and other elements of glossy studio veneer. Go listen to "Born in the U.S.A". It should be tacky, but somehow it just isn't. Let the chill run down your spine as Bruce blares that he used to "he had a woman he loved in Saigon/ I gotta picture of him in her arms".

Springsteen tears though these song like a lion. His lyrics punch right in the gut, they draw lines, expose ideas, emotions that drive into your soul. 

Other Springsteen albums feature the stadium-rock group the E Street Band at his disposal, inviting loud riffs and saxophone solos (see Born to Run). He's also released spare collections of acoustic songs on albums like Nebraska and The Ghost of Tom Joad. And he's got the gaudy synth stuff, like Born in the U.S.A
Image result for philadelphia movie

Springsteen's also recorded a song for the 1993 film Philadelphia, starring Denzel Washington and Tom Hanks. The film is cited as one of the fist mainstream productions that dealt with the AIDS virus, as it follows a Philly lawyer through the ramifications of the disease. The song, "Streets of Philadelphia", utilizes the dark tones of a synthesizer followed by a simple 80's sounding drum beat, with occasional background vocals to complete the picture. "Streets" is a downtrodden song, dealing with ten different kinds of pain- a long walk through a brick city of sidewalks, dumpsters, piers, taxi cabs, and fading lights. It just the kinda song that can cut right through your heart. 


And then there's an acoustic version, Nebraska style:

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