Buried deep in a newly-released piece on Rolling Stone about Bruce Springsteen's forthcoming album High Hopes, Springsteen's longtime manager Jon Landau may have given some insight as to what might come next from the Boss on the catalogue front.
While next year is the 30th anniversary of Springsteen's landmark hit Born in the U.S.A., Landau suggests that the next bit of catalogue activity might come from before that era - particularly 1980's double album The River. "There's ongoing work on a River box set," Landau said. "Maybe we’ll do that first."
The River, of course, is a great choice for an archival set. Mixing bright, fun rock and roll moments (the No. 5 hit "Hungry Heart") with more darker, brooding material ("Fade Away," the haunting title track), it's one of the best albums of his career, and an intriguing preview of the amazing decade Bruce would have in the 1980s.
But that's not all: Landau also reveals remastering is being done "as we speak" on Bruce's first two albums, 1973's Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J. and The Wild, The Innocent and The E Street Shuffle. As fascinating previews of Springsteen's songwriting voice ("Blinded by the Light," later a hit for Manfred Mann's Earth Band, plus immortal live cuts "4th of July, Asbury Park (Sandy)" and "Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)") - not to mention two records that have never, ever been remastered on CD since the first tape transfer probably a quarter century and change ago - this is equally exciting news.
As always, keep it here at The Second Disc for stories like these as they develop.
zs (@Gonzeux) says
This is good news on all fronts. Those first few albums sounds real muddy on cd. And I'm all for a River box. Springsteen and his team have done some great catalog work, going back to the Tracks set. The care that went into the Born to Run and (especially) Darkness boxes is astounding, and I'd happily fork over cash for others in that vein.
Jim Regan (@Jbones72) says
It's about time...let's hope for deluxe editions too!!!
Have the remastered versions "Born To Run" and "Darkness On The Edge Of Town" ever replaced the standard CD versions of those albums, or are they still only available as part of a boxed set?
Michael Fortin says
I believe you can download the remastered versions from iTunes without buying the box
I've avoided buying these albums for years as I've waited for a remaster.
It'd be great to see expanced and remastered versions of the first two albums, and the River box has been in the works since forever. It'll be interesting to see what River outtakes still reside in the vault. Clearly "Cindy" will finally see the light of day, and hopefully we'll finally get the studio version "Held Up Without A Gun" as well.
'Cindy' was the song I was thinking of too...Bruce has to have a few suprises in the vaults too!!
I'd like to see the original mix of "Loose Ends" from the old Ties That Bind bootleg. The mix they used on Tracks buried the acoustic guitars and vocals.
Jason Paskowitz says
About time. I have The River on 2005 Sony Japanese released in support of the 30th Anniversary of Born to Run. Substantially better sounding than the plain vanilla US release, but still lacking compared to the BTR box set. Hopefully they get it right this time.
I'm looking forward to remasters--hopefully deluxe editions --of the first two albums , and though I'd prefer a Nebraska/Born in the USA box, a set devoted to The River would be a natural continuation of The Darkness era. Whatever comes next, here's hoping Bruce resists the temptation to futz with the originals by adding 2013 vocals to 40 year old recordings, or by adding anachronistic female-background singers--like he did with The Promise set.