Bruce Springsteen Expresses ‘Only the Strong Survive’ Revelation

Time isn’t always on a rock singer’s side, but in Bruce Springsteen’s case, the older the better.

Springsteen’s new album “Only the Strong Survive,” due Friday, Nov. 11, from Columbia Records, features 15 soul classics, rarities and forgotten favorites that put the 73-year-old’s voice at the center of the stage.

The Boss delivers, and it’s a revelation.

Springsteen’s voice here is crushed velvet fueled by an overflowing heartache. On the Four Tops’ 1981 hit “When She Was My Girl,” Springsteen begins with an easy vocal groove with masterful phrasing, then explodes in soul pain during the chorus. There’s a shimmering falsetto on The Temptations’ “I Wish It Would Rain,” and a vocal majesty that rivals the late Jimmy Ruffin on “What Becomes of the Brokenhearted.”

Producer Ron Aniello added some extra reverb to Springsteen’s mic for the Walker Brothers’ baroque pop classic, “The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine Anymore,” and the effect is as lavish and dramatic as the late Scott’s performance. Walker.

The Boss gives it to classics, and rarities too. On “I Forgot to be Your Lover,” originally performed by William Bell on Stax Records in 1968, Springsteen soars on the aching ballad with several sustained notes and a bone-chilling heartbroken position. He’s the legendary replacement for Sam Moore. (The Jerseys seem fond of the track. In 2002, New Brunswick R&B hitmaker Jaheim reinterpreted the song as “Put That Woman First.”)

Springsteen’s raspy voice at this point has sometimes been ridiculed, but he’s one of rock’s finest vocalists, thanks to his passion, bellows, and howls. Her vocal performance on “Jungleland” is sublime.

“I decided to do something that I had never done before – make music centered around singing, about challenging my voice,” Springsteen said in an “Only the Strong Survive” video message from the 29 september. “In my own memoir, I give my voice a bit of a hard time saying I didn’t think I had a lot. But once I started this project, after listening to some of the stuff we cut, I thought my voice was badass!I’m 73, I kick ass, I’m a good old man!

After:Springsteen shares final moments with Clarence Clemons and more on Howard Stern’s show

After:Bruce Springsteen album ‘Only the Strong Survive’ not Boss’ first foray into soul music

R&B and soul music has been performed by Springsteen throughout his career, beginning in his teens.

“The music that led to this epiphany and gave me this idea was soul music!” Springsteen said in the post.

The album features contributions from the E Street Horns (Eddie Manion, Curt Ramm, Barry Danielian, Eddie Manion, Clark Gayton, Bill Holloman and Tom Timko), string arrangements by Rob Mathes and backing vocals by Soozie Tyrell, Lisa Lowell, Michelle Moore. , Curtis King Jr., Dennis Collins and Fonzi Thornton.

“Choirs” might be a misnomer on “Only the Strong Survive”. The singers are beautifully featured on several tracks, including King Jr., Collins, and Thornton on “7 Rooms of Gloom,” and Tyrell, Lowell, and King Jr. on the Diana Ross and Supremes classic “Someday We’ll Be Together.” ,” which closes the album.

Springsteen is co-producer and Rob Lebret is the engineer. Jon Landau is the executive producer.

Aniello, who has produced Springsteen albums since 2012’s “Wrecking Ball,” plays guitar, bass, drums, keyboards and more on the album. It’s quite an achievement, from the sweet arpeggiated guitar intro on “I Forgot to be Your Lover” to the ringing vibes on “What Becomes of the Broken Hearted.”

It’s like Springsteen gave Aniello the keys and told him you were driving, I sing.

Behind the recording board, Aniello keeps it warmly analog and crisp, much like the great Motown records. New artistic ground isn’t broken on “Only the Strong Survive,” but its 15 songs celebrate the joy of music, soul, and performance.

Only Strong Survive Tracklist

  1. Only the strong survive
  2. Soul Days (with Sam Moore)
  3. night patrol
  4. Do I love you (indeed I love you)
  5. The sun will no longer shine
  6. Turn back the hands of time
  7. when she was my daughter
  8. Hey, Western Union man
  9. I wish it would rain
  10. don’t play this song
  11. any other way
  12. I forgot to be your lover (with Sam Moore)
  13. 7 dark rooms
  14. What becomes of the broken heart
  15. One day we will be together

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Jersey Shore native Chris Jordan covers music and entertainment for USA Today Network New Jersey. Contact him at @chrisfhjordan; [email protected]

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