Thursday, April 17, 2008

Boot Tracker; April 13th 2008, Dallas Texas

"Springsteen still commands the spot light" the Dallas Morning News boasted the next day. Not without reason, The Boss gave a more than worthy performance in Texas with lots of surprises in the set. Another recording I was anxiously awaiting to see how it turned out. Unfortunately Dallas is the first recording in a row that disappoints. Which is unfortunate because it seems that Springsteen and the band were on fire again. It had been three years since the Boss had visited Dallas, skipping it during the Seeger Sessions Tour, six years since the E-Street Band had graced the state of Texas. There was some catching up to do and they did! In spades. Making it all the more a bitter sweet experience to listen to this recording, the band sounds like they are somewhere at the bottom of a pit, with a few excitable fans standing on the edge, clapping off beat. Again the recording notes from the taper explain the circumstances of the tape best. I can only applaud him for all the effort once more.

Nowhere near perfect recording from the side of the stage. Missing the “in your face” feel, but overall very acceptable. I was kind of in a speaker no man’s land. There really wasn’t any bank of speakers with a direct bead on me. However, the bigger problem may be the crowd around me. In front I have the young drunks who two songs into the encore have successfully made a mad dash to the concession stand to make sure each guy had 4 beers left to drink. Then there was the party girl next to me who tried to get me to dance. –Can’t you see I’m doing something here?!- The best might have been the play by play guy behind me who through the course of the night tried to be the first person to shout out the song title. He also let us know “this is my favorite Springsteen song,” “this is the best song on Magic,” and “this is what the E Street Band is all about.” He kinda lost credibility when he said Reason To Believe was a cover of an old blues song. If I wasn’t taping I would have told him all about the album Nebraska. As you listen be prepared for the random scream, overclapping, and crowd chatter.

Anybody who's willing to bite through that will find that there's still quite a bit to enjoy on this bootleg. "Tenth Avenue Freeze Out" as an opener is noticeably effective. Spirits were up early in Dallas it appears. Springsteen didn't spare the home state of Dubya the introduction to "Living In The Future" and judging from the crowd response, being Texan doesn't mean you're an ostrich. A lot of cheers and no booing to uncover (at least not on the recording). Though not a favorite of mine, I think the fans of "Independence Day" will be quite satisfied with the performance of the song on the 13th. Maybe it's because he's a father himself now, but Springsteen still sounds like he's able to connect deeply with that song. Jon Bon Jovi's guest spot on "Glory Days" is fun, but nothing special. Just two Jersey boys hanging out together. And judging from the screaming girls they raised some hell.

"Independence Day"
Download the full show in mp3 here

Sound: 2+ out of 5
Show: 4+ out of 5
Art work: 3,5 out of 5

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