There is no show like a Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band show. Performing for well over three hours, Springsteen and company delivered another sprawling, enjoyable, often humorous, sometimes emotional, but always a thrilling show and had the audience under their spell for the duration. They are relentless in their pursuit of entertaining the audience, providing value for money on a scale rarely seen these days. For well over three hours last Tuesday, Springsteen made you believe that nothing else mattered and he was there to entertain you and not that you there to see him sing a few songs. The man is out of this world in terms of being a performer and it is obvious he loves every minute of it, and it is reflected in his energetic performances that in turn drive the rest of the band.
It was obvious from early on that he was on mischievous form and in the mood for fun, making light of the Hyde Park curfew mess and using it as a starting point and setting the mood for a great rendition of 'I Fought the Law'. From there on, the band rampaged through 30 songs from their extensive back catalogue. Even songs I confess that I have no time for or dislike (songs like 'Dancing in the Dark' do nowt for me) were rip-roaring and the band had the audience in their raptures for large spells, blazing out classic after classic and the RDS was afloat with joy and pure entertainment. This brings me to perhaps what I think the main reason for Springsteen and the band being such an enduring presence and maintaining their high levels of popularity is their diversity and for every 'Dancing in the Dark' and 'Born in the U.S.A.' are a 'My City of Ruins' (which had me in awe and was arguably song of the night for me), 'Darkness on the Edge of Town' and 'My Hometown'. These are collections of songs so contrasting in style and substance, but which provide a perfect mix of emotions that allow for the band to remain relevant and to keep going for such a long time.
Among other highlights of the night was the thrilling and lively 'Murder Incorporated' as well as a selection of the songs from the latest album, Wrecking Ball. The epic encore, consisting of crowd favourites like 'Born to Run', 'Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)' and another standout, 'Tenth Avenue Freeze-out', that contained a wonderful tribute to the late Clarence Clemons was a wonderful summarization of what this collection of musicians are all about. Even though it's my third time seeing them, it is still an awe-inspiring and breathtaking spectacle, there is no reliance on a light-show or big gimmicks, just a band doing what they do best.