Paolo's Circus Story

Review: Bruce Springsteen’s “Western Stars: Songs From The Film”

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I'm really happy that everyone else loves this live album as much as I do. 

I mean, I shouldn't be surprised, but I did expect it to be a case of "this is great, but I prefer the studio", and that doesn't seem to be how it is. That's git cool. 

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43 minutes ago, doesthisbusstop said:

Rhinestone Cowboy by the way, a contender for Bruce’s best cover of all time. 

No doubt. Might even be his best one but maybe that's because it's still new. But yeah one of his best for sure!

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The guy is 70 and pulls this one out of his cowboy hat lmao. It's criminal that he's not touring with this. I'd pay a shitload of money to see this.

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9 minutes ago, Paolo's Circus Story said:

I'm really happy that everyone else loves this live album as much as I do. 

I mean, I shouldn't be surprised, but I did expect it to be a case of "this is great, but I prefer the studio", and that doesn't seem to be how it is. That's git cool. 

As I’ve said many times this year, it’s a great time to be alive as a Bruce fan. Imagine a live album of born to run being released in 1975 within a few months of the studio album! 

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Just now, doesthisbusstop said:

As I’ve said many times this year, it’s a great time to be alive as a Bruce fan. Imagine a live album of born to run being released in 1975 within a few months of the studio album! 

I'm trying to get my head around the fact that today I've got 179 official Springsteen live releases whereas in early 2014 I had - and was thrilled with having - 7. That Ron Burgundy "escalated quickly" meme has never been more accurate about anything else than it currently is the Bruce Springsteen's live releases. 

I've gotta check if there was a show in 1975 where all eight BTR tracks were played, and then find a recording to see if it's better than this Western Stars live album :lol:

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36 minutes ago, Paolo's Circus Story said:

I'm trying to get my head around the fact that today I've got 179 official Springsteen live releases whereas in early 2014 I had - and was thrilled with having - 7. That Ron Burgundy "escalated quickly" meme has never been more accurate about anything else than it currently is the Bruce Springsteen's live releases. 

I've gotta check if there was a show in 1975 where all eight BTR tracks were played, and then find a recording to see if it's better than this Western Stars live album :lol:

I think you’ll find that the only contemporary recording of all eight BTR tracks being played live is from East Lansing on 4th April 1976.  This show’s certainly been bootlegged to CD and no doubt is available as a download through the Bootleg Collectors thread.

NIGHT / TENTH AVENUE FREEZE-OUT / SPIRIT IN THE NIGHT / IT'S MY LIFE / THUNDER ROAD / SHE'S THE ONE / BORN TO RUN / FRANKIE / MEETING ACROSS THE RIVER / BACKSTREETS / GROWIN' UP / IT'S HARD TO BE A SAINT IN THE CITY / JUNGLELAND / ROSALITA (COME OUT TONIGHT) / RAISE YOUR HAND / 4TH OF JULY, ASBURY PARK (SANDY) / DETROIT MEDLEY / QUARTER TO THREE

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3 minutes ago, hammersmith75 said:

I think you’ll find that the only contemporary recording of all eight BTR tracks being played live is from East Lansing on 4th April 1976

NIGHT / TENTH AVENUE FREEZE-OUT / SPIRIT IN THE NIGHT / IT'S MY LIFE / THUNDER ROAD / SHE'S THE ONE / BORN TO RUN / FRANKIE / MEETING ACROSS THE RIVER / BACKSTREETS / GROWIN' UP / IT'S HARD TO BE A SAINT IN THE CITY / JUNGLELAND / ROSALITA (COME OUT TONIGHT) / RAISE YOUR HAND / 4TH OF JULY, ASBURY PARK (SANDY) / DETROIT MEDLEY / QUARTER TO THREE

This show’s certainly been bootlegged to CD and no doubt is available as a download through the Bootleg Collectors thread.

Love East Lansing '76. 

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10 hours ago, Jerseyfornia said:

Of course, that was before the Brucemania of 84 so no one might have went to see it.

Not so many will see the WS movie in a theater if you consider it has such a limited release. 

That is if you take account of the average movie audience and Bruce's worldwide popularity. 

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6 hours ago, doesthisbusstop said:
6 hours ago, Paolo's Circus Story said:

 

As I’ve said many times this year, it’s a great time to be alive as a Bruce fan. Imagine a live album of born to run being released in 1975 within a few months of the studio album! 

I'm imagining it and apart from how happy I would be as a long time fan, I must admit that it wouldn't have added that much. 

The same goes for this 'new' WS release, no matter how happy I am as a fan and how much I find it an improvement to the studio version, no matter how much every new release is a joy for me, I still must admit that WS 'live' doesn't add much to the original nor to Bruce's musical progression. 

I understand this is a very unpopular opinion but it's just my two cents... 

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18 minutes ago, 100yrsOld said:

Not so many will see the WS movie in a theater if you consider it has such a limited release. 

That is if you take account of the average movie audience and Bruce's worldwide popularity. 

That's partly why it can't be called a money grab.

There were less than 25 people in the theater when I saw it. I would guess that so far, they've lost money on the film and I'm pretty sure no one involved in  the distribution or making of the movie expected any kind of blockbuster. I think the theatrical release is just so the film can be presented in proper audio on a big screen and the home video release will recoup some losses.

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I just love Western Stars and it has been played from start to finish each time that I listen to it. Every time I finish the album I can’t believe just how good it is and I often want to just play it over again but stop myself as I don’t want to tire of that wow feeling.Yesterday I listened to the live version 3 times and it’s just stunning and I love how there are some differences in each song and I can’t wait to see this on Monday night. Oh and Rhinestone Cowboy is a fantastic way to finish the album & the film, what a great cover by Bruce. Love it.

To get my double Western Stars fix I have made a playlist of first the studio album followed by the live film album which will be a great way to spend 2 hours listening to this stunning music.

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On 10/25/2019 at 3:58 AM, Bosstralian said:

Well, Bruce has pulled a new one out of the hat here.... making a new studio album close to redundant within four months by releasing a superior live version.

 

I don't agree this live album makes the studio version close to redundant. To me it's great to have both and I'll continue to play both. In fact having had the live album on repeat, I prefer WS (title track) and Sundown on the studio album but as I say it's great to have both.

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Good review, Paolo! 

Listened to it once last night, and it is really good. Yes, Bruce sounds older and his voice isn't as strong as on the album, but...he is 70. I don't think it's a negative thing at all, I actually enjoy his singing here, both his voice and the subtle changes in how he sings certain lines.

The strings on The Wayfarer (the riff) are much more lively than on the studio version, more lively/bouncy, and I just love the call and response of the strings and the horns on the musical break (on both versions). At this moment, this is my favourite track on the album. 

Sleepy Joe's is great fun, I just adore Charlie's playing here (too!). He's just an amazing find and I'm so glad he's with Bruce. What a guy.

Both Drive Fast and Chasin' stand out here. Actually, of all the songs, I only think the title track is a bit better on the studio album. That's mostly due to the orchestra, it's so much bigger-sounding in the studio, and that song just needs the biggest sound you can get.

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A huge shout out to 'musical director and arranger' Rob Mathes.

When the original album came out I probably described him as the unsung star of the album. Well, guess what?  He is on this one, too.

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13 hours ago, Perisic said:

No doubt. Might even be his best one but maybe that's because it's still new. But yeah one of his best for sure!

It helps that it is a fantastic song anyway...but Bruce's spectacular version is wonderful and just enhances it.

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I love Western Stars, and I was really looking forward to hear the live version.

Today I finally did. Lord, it sounded great! I was so happy until I hit "Moonlight Hotel", where at some point Patti's voice joins Bruce's. oh - my - God... that creeped me out, I got my hair standing on the end! How to ruin such a great song! It is awful.

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17 minutes ago, carlo_milan said:

I love Western Stars, and I was really looking forward to hear the live version.

Today I finally did. Lord, it sounded great! I was so happy until I hit "Moonlight Hotel", where at some point Patti's voice joins Bruce's. oh - my - God... that creeped me out, I got my hair standing on the end! How to ruin such a great song! It is awful.

I'm hoping not.

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21 minutes ago, carlo_milan said:

I love Western Stars, and I was really looking forward to hear the live version.

Today I finally did. Lord, it sounded great! I was so happy until I hit "Moonlight Hotel", where at some point Patti's voice joins Bruce's. oh - my - God... that creeped me out, I got my hair standing on the end! How to ruin such a great song! It is awful.

I think her whisper-like vocals on Moonlight Motel are wonderful.

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Ok I’ve played the live version several times so my preference of both albums is: 

1. Hitch Hikin’ (live)

2. The Wayfarer (live)

3. Tuscan Train (studio)

4. Western Stars (studio)

5. Sleepy Joe’s Cafe (live)

6. Drive Fast (live)

7. Chasin’ Wild Horses (live)

8. Sundown (live)

9. Somewhere North of Nashville (live)

10. Stones (live)

11. There Goes My Miracle (live)

12. Hello Sunshine (live)

13. Moonlight Motel (studio) 

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36 minutes ago, doesthisbusstop said:

 

3. Tuscan Train (studio)

That’s the song where he’s waiting in Italy.  

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38 minutes ago, doesthisbusstop said:

Ok I’ve played the live version several times so my preference of both albums is: 

1. Hitch Hikin’ (live)

2. The Wayfarer (live)

3. Tuscan Train (studio)

4. Western Stars (studio)

5. Sleepy Joe’s Cafe (live)

6. Drive Fast (live)

7. Chasin’ Wild Horses (live)

8. Sundown (live)

9. Somewhere North of Nashville (live)

10. Stones (live)

11. There Goes My Miracle (live)

12. Hello Sunshine (live)

13. Moonlight Motel (studio) 

I agree with just about all of this, "Tucson Train" being the exception. 

I think that, "Hikin'", "Stones" and "Sunshine" are my favourites from this live album. 

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I'm also liking "Miracle" more and more each time I hear it, so it'll probably find itself in with those four in about a week. 

I've just buckled myself at how "Hello Sunshine" and "There Goes My Miracle" will be Western Stars live favourites in due time. Who'd have thought that a week ago?

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10 minutes ago, Kburke said:

That’s the song where he’s waiting in Italy.  

Peolo's place :lol:

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