12 Songs, 56 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

High Hopes is the most unusual album in Bruce Springsteen's extensive catalog. It features three covers, two key Springsteen favorites brought up to date—“American Skin (41 Shots)” and “The Ghost of Tom Joad”—and a batch of great songs that are among the most sonically adventurous of the Boss' career, courtesy of producer Ron Aniello and Rage Against the Machine’s Tom Morello. Versions of Tim Scott McConnell’s “High Hopes” and Suicide’s “Dream Baby Dream” bookend the record, but it’s Springsteen’s snarling take of Chris Bailey and The Saints’ 1986 single “Just Like Fire Would” that sounds like a lost E Street Band song from their late-'70s prime. It's got the help of the NY Chamber Consort Strings and Morello, who adds heavier guitar touches throughout the album. “Heaven’s Wall” uses the same guests for a very different effect. “Down in the Hole” brings back the brooding synth magic of “I’m on Fire," while “The Wall” (a somber, personal tale of visiting the Vietnam War Memorial and remembering guys from the Asbury Park music scene who never returned home), feels like Bruce has struck the nerve that brings about his best work. 

EDITORS’ NOTES

High Hopes is the most unusual album in Bruce Springsteen's extensive catalog. It features three covers, two key Springsteen favorites brought up to date—“American Skin (41 Shots)” and “The Ghost of Tom Joad”—and a batch of great songs that are among the most sonically adventurous of the Boss' career, courtesy of producer Ron Aniello and Rage Against the Machine’s Tom Morello. Versions of Tim Scott McConnell’s “High Hopes” and Suicide’s “Dream Baby Dream” bookend the record, but it’s Springsteen’s snarling take of Chris Bailey and The Saints’ 1986 single “Just Like Fire Would” that sounds like a lost E Street Band song from their late-'70s prime. It's got the help of the NY Chamber Consort Strings and Morello, who adds heavier guitar touches throughout the album. “Heaven’s Wall” uses the same guests for a very different effect. “Down in the Hole” brings back the brooding synth magic of “I’m on Fire," while “The Wall” (a somber, personal tale of visiting the Vietnam War Memorial and remembering guys from the Asbury Park music scene who never returned home), feels like Bruce has struck the nerve that brings about his best work. 

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